Meet Oh Su-hyun. She is the youngest ever player to tee off at the Women’s Australian Open. Read more about her below, see photos, and watch a fun video.
Oh Su-hyun, age 12, earned the right to take on pro Karrie Webb at the Metropolitan Golf Club in Melbourne, Austrailia after winning the official open qualifying tournament on Monday. She shot a six-over-par 79. A good score by anyone’s standard – one a lot of seasoned pros around her would have been happy for. It was her first time playing with pros in front of a paying crowd.
“I was really nervous when I started and really nervous when I finished,” said Oh, who turns 13 in May. “I enjoyed it, but I did not play good golf. I was going 1-over after nine holes then I had three bogeys in a row.”
Not too bad for a girl who hadn’t picked up a golf club before moving to Austrailia from South Korea in 2004!
Surprisingly though, Oh isn’t the youngest golfer ever. Michelle Wie, was just 10 years old when she qualified for the US Amateur Public Links Championship in 2000, while Ariya Jutanukarn, was 11 years 11 months and 2 days when she competed on the LPGA tour in 2007.
Oh Su-hyun was born in June of 1996 in Busan, South Korea so her age is 12. Her father, Oh Seok-gu, introduced her to the game at a local golf course. These days he finds it too frustrating to play his daughter, who has a two handicap!
Although Oh Su-hyun is still a South Korean national, she would very much like Australian citizenship and become eligible to represent her adopted country in matchplay tournaments. She is the Victoria state junior champion which is the under-18 tournament she won last year.
At this point, Oh Su-hyun says she’s made no plans for a professional career, and is still trying to combine her studies with the demands of golf practice. But I suspect that if she becomes even more proficient, pro golf is definately in her future!
Kid Golfer Video