Resourcefulness pays off for Genevieve Ling with new career chapter on Women’s All-Pro Tour in the US | Malay Mail
KUALA LUMPUR, March 27 ― As they say, “nothing ventured, nothing gained” for Genevieve Ling , that rings loud and true. Thanks to her own resourcefulness, the talented 26-year-old leaves for the United States next week to compete on the Women’s All-Pro Tour (WAPT). Genevieve flies to...
Saturday, 27 Mar 2021 07:03 AM MYTBy JONATHAN EDWARDS PONNIAHGenevieve flies to Texas on March 31 and will tee up in the WAPT’s 2021 season-opener, the US$50,000 Mackie Construction Abilene Open, on April 6-9 at Abilene Country Club. ― Picture via Pargolf
Subscribe to ourTelegramchannel for the latest updates on news you need to know.KUALA LUMPUR, March 27 ― As they say, “nothing ventured, nothing gained” for Genevieve Ling, that rings loud and true. Thanks to her own resourcefulness, the talented 26-year-old leaves for the United States next week to compete on the Women’s All-Pro Tour (WAPT).
Genevieve flies to Texas on March 31 and will tee up in the WAPT’s 2021 season-opener, the US$50,000 (RM207,294.56) Mackie Construction Abilene Open, on April 6-9 at Abilene Country Club. This is only the third season of the regional circuit, which has close links to the LPGA’s secondary Symetra Tour. headtopics.com
Needless to say, Genevieve can’t wait to embark on this exciting new adventure in her short but colourful professional career.“I’m really looking forward to playing tournaments again and going back to the States as well, as I’ve wanted to do that since graduating from college,” said Genevieve, who turned pro in 2017 after a stellar amateur career which saw her represent Malaysia before earning a golf scholarship to Boise State University in Idaho.
While she currently holds cards for the Taiwan LPGA Tour and China LPGA Tour, Genevieve has not been able to compete on either circuit since the Covid-19 pandemic broke out early last year. Her last overseas event was in Taiwan last January while locally, the only professional event she played in 2020 was the PGM MNRB Closed Championship at Glenmarie last September where a tournament-rusty Genevieve missed the cut.
“I felt like I was just about to get my footing here in Asia and then Covid hit, so I didn’t really get an opportunity to build on that. I’m super excited to play on the WAPT and we’ll see what happens from there,” noted Genevieve.Each WAPT tournament awards the top two finishers with starts into a subsequent Symetra Tour event. Additionally, the top five players on the WAPT season rankings ― known as the “Race 2 Stage” II ― are given exemptions into Stage II of the LPGA qualifying school, which takes place this October at Plantation Golf & Country Club in Venice, Florida.
“There are many other mini-tours in the US but I chose the WAPT because it’s a lead-up to the Symetra Tour. Obviously there are some requirements before they accept you, for instance being a member of another tour, and that’s how I managed to get on it,” said Genevieve. headtopics.com
Three years ago, Genevieve became the first Malaysian to play on the Korean LPGA Tour after earning 10 starts on the lucrative circuit by making the final of the golf reality show,Cinderella Story. This time around, she will set another milestone for the nation as the first golfer from our shores to compete on the WAPT.
Getting her parents to agree to her plans, Genevieve shared, was a bit of a challenge. “I’m going alone, so obviously Mum and Dad were a bit worried, but at the same time, they know that me staying here was not good for my career. I can just wait for China and Taiwan to reopen but that’s not going to happen until at least late this year.”
Genevieve’s first event will be the WAPT’s 2021 season-opener, the US$50,000 Mackie Construction Abilene Open on April 6-9 at Abilene Country Club. This will be the first of 11 events on the tour’s summer swing, staged mainly at venues in Texas with a few events in Arkansas and one in Mississippi. The Race 2 Stage II concludes with the Babe Zaharias Open at Beaumont Country Club in late July, just two weeks before the LPGA Q-School Stage 1 at Mission Hills Country Club in Rancho Mirage, California.
For the first few events at least, Genevieve will be very much on her own, self-driving in a rented car to events and staying mainly at official hotels.“I have a friend whose family lives in Austin but that’s quite far from where the WAPT tournaments are normally staged, so I’ll probably go and stay with her parents in between events. For the most part I’ll be driving myself to events and staying at the tournament hotels. I’ll also be pulling my own bag on course,” she revealed. headtopics.com
“There are two players from Asia that I know who are playing on the WAPT ― Tatiana Wiyaja from Indonesia and Nikita Arjun from India, who have been playing on the circuit for one or two years already. I’ve reached out to them, so they know I’m coming,” she added.
“I’m really excited as it’s been so long since I played in a tournament. Staying here and not being able to compete was stressing me out. Obviously you can still practise and train every day, but t’s not the same as competing. The longer you don’t play tournaments, the longer it will take you to get back into it that’s why I was searching the internet to find somewhere to play and came across the WAPT,” noted Genevieve, who has won four titles on the local PGM Tour.
“I’ll play all the WAPT summer events and hopefully get into some Symetra tour events through them. If I have to play the first stage of LPGA Q-School, then I’ll stay back for that. The WAPT structures their season so that it leads up perfectly to Q-School,” she added.
This is not the first time that Genevieve has tried her luck as a professional in the United States. In 2017, she signed up for LPGA Q-School and made it to the second stage of the gruelling qualifier.With prize money being on the low side, most players competing on the WAPT will not earn enough to cover tournament, travel, accommodation and other expenses. Genevieve’s strong social media presence ― she currently has close to 50,000 followers on Instagram and her
Golf With Gen YouTubechannel recently hit 25,000 subscribers ― paid off as she managed to raise enough money from a crowd-funding campaign on GoGetFunding.com to cover the projected costs.Titled “Get Gen Back On Tour”, the crowd-funder reached her target of US$25,000 in just eight hours and has managed to amass close to US$60,000 from well-wishers so far, which will also help her cover the Q-School costs.
“It was crazy! A lot of it came from people I’ve never met before but who watch my YouTube channel. Obviously I didn’t start the channel with the intention of raising money, but I shared a bit of my life experiences and the struggles I faced as a touring pro during this pandemic; and some folk from the YouTube community suggested I do a crowd-funder.
“I was hesitant at first as I thought it was not nice to ask people for money, but they kept encouraging me to do it and so I went ahead. I’m really thankful that there are so many generous people out there; many of them just reached out and donated anonymously,” Genevieve shared.
“I think in a way I got lucky that many followers on my YouTube channel were passionate about golf and just wanted to support me and my career. Social media can be a bit of a hit-and-miss, but if you stick it out and are your true self, people will see that,” she concluded.
And so begins the next episode in Genevieve’s golf journey and you can be sure it will be well-documented on social media! ― Pargolf Read more: Malay Mail »
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