The annual Halberg Sports Awards were held the other night and in one of the categories there was an impressive and notable list of ’emerging’ young sports stars. It was impressive because each of the young people nominated has already created an image on the world stage in their chosen sports. Jacko Gill (athletics), Shaun Johnson (rugby league), Sam Meech (sailing), Byron Wells (skiing) were the shortlisted finalists.
The list was notable because it not only didn’t feature a female, but World Champion 14 year old golfer Lydia Ko wasn’t part of the list. I believe that had she been nominated not only would she have made the shortlist from which the winner was chosen, but would have been at very short odds to win.
Oh! Wait!! NOMINATED!!!!???? There’s the problem. Lydia wasn’t even nominated! It seems NZ Golf in its infinite wisdom decided not to put her name forward for consideration! If this is true it is astonishing. I can only assume that they must have felt that Lydia is past “emerging” given she has had such success and is “emerged” (in the criteria there is the term “elite” used with reference to competition- given Lydia has won the world amateur championship perhaps that qualifies as “elite”?.)
This is an amazing talent and New Zealand can look forward to having a new and exciting profile on the international golf stage.Good luck, Lydia, and I look forward to seeing more and more of your exploits on courses around the world.