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Georgia’s Superstitions

So how long does it take for winning a major to sink in?  Georgia Hall won last year’s Ricoh Women’s British Open but still she struggles to believe it.


The question which detonated that piece of information came up at her pre-tournament press conference. Had she, someone asked, added to her confidence levels since she collected what was not just her first major but her first LPGA tournament title.


Though she could not be sure (at least as yet) she said that she was still the same person as she had been before, and that her thinking had not changed either. “But,” she went on, “if I’m playing badly on a hole, or I’m struggling, I do say to myself something along the lines, ‘ Georgia, you won the British Open.’ That tells me that I can kind of make a couple of birdies to make up for whatever I’ve done wrong.”


Hall’s aim for this week’s HSBC Women’s World Championship in Singapore is less about making off with the trophy than being consistent through all four rounds – something which hasn’t happened in her last couple of tournaments.  In which connection, she explained that she is a great believer in working on small goals rather than, say, thinking in terms of winning every time she tees up.


Along the same lines, though she confessed to wanting to have a matching victory in the States at some point, she will be utilising the experience she gleaned in her rookie year to prepare better for the American majors. For example, she will miss out on this year’s Kia tournament in a bid to be as ready as she can be for the ANA Inspiration.


The question of her father-cum-caddie wearing the same pair of socks for four days as she won at Woburn inevitably came up, and whether she would be expecting her boyfriend, Harry, to do the same in the same circumstances. (Harry was shaking his head in horror at the back of the room.)


“Well, now that you’ve put the idea in my head – if I do well in my first round, I might tell him to keep the same ones on…”


Going on from there, she did not mind saying that she fed off any number of superstitions on the golf course, the most improbable of which concerns how, before she sets out, she counts her clubs to make sure she’s got the regulation 14 in the bag – and then she feels the need to touch each of them twice.


She likes to keep her tees and gloves in the same pocket in her golf bag, and still more importantly, once she starts on a tournament she sticks with the same pair of shoes throughout.


All of which is pretty odd when you consider that she probably has as great a selection from which to choose as the late Imelda Marcos, the former First Lady of the Philippines. When she died at the age of 89,  Marcos had as many as 1,000 pairs of fashionable shoes, all of which were alleged to have been charged to her government expenses.