A FIVE-YEAR-OLD Evesham youngster is hoping to tee-off a life on the fairways and follow in the footsteps of golfing greats Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson.
Louis Rickett from Harvington, will take to the greens in San Diego to represent the UK in the prestigious IMG Junior Golf Championships from July 11 to 17.
Little Louis will compete in the under six category of the US tournament which attracts golfers from 57 countries around the world and counts Woods and Mickelson among its past winners.
The talented youngster tackled a number of UK qualifying events over the last six months and will join three other British five-year-olds on the course.
Simon Rickett, Louis’ dad told The Observer: “Both Kirsty (Louis’ Mum) and I are incredibly proud of what he has achieved and you have to pinch yourself when you realise he will be playing in a tournament which greats such as Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson have won.
“Louis thrives on competition, no matter what he does he has to win and I think he loves golf so much because of how challenging it is. If you give him a fun game to play with no competition he’s not interested, make it competitive and he’s a different child.
“He doesn’t really have any idea of how good he is, because he’s football mad we had to explain it in football terms for him by saying he is going to the world cup for golf and when he realised what that meant he asked if he would be on TV.” he added.
Louis only picked up a club five months ago at junior coaching sessions at the Vale Golf and Country Club where he has been tutored by club professionals, Ryan Dix and Harry Thompson.
Mr Dix said: “This is a tremendous achievement for Louis, from day one we recognised he had an extraordinary talent, and we as a club are so proud of what he as achieved in such a short period of time.”
Mr Thompson said: “When you see Louis it is hard to believe he can hit a golf ball so far, he is so small for his age but manages to compete and beat children who are twice his size, and to have qualified for such a prestigious event for the year
above himself is quite remarkable.”
Since January, Louis’ fairway to success has seen him win the eight-year-old category in the Gloucestershire Ezgo County Tournament by 14 shots, and finish second in the European Junior Tour at Nailcote Hall, against children who were all older than him.
To find out more about the club’s junior coaching programme which is held every Saturday and Sunday for children from five to 18, call 01386 462520.
Visit www.facebook.com/louisrickett to follow Louis progress.