Legends of tennis and rugby, Tim Henman, Gavin Hastings and Jonathan Davies, helped to convert a new set of youngsters to golf at The Open Championship as guests of golf charity the Golf Foundation. The sporting heroes played a series of golf challenges against boys and girls to help raise the profile of the charity’s HSBC Golf Roots programme.
HSBC Golf Roots reaches hundreds of thousands of youngsters in schools each year, creates stronger links between schools and golf clubs; all the while promoting the life skills that golf can offer young people.
Davies, Hastings and Henman are HSBC Ambassadors and are all highly respected by sports lovers for the way they combine a fiery competitive spirit with the best sporting values.
The trio visited the ‘R&A Swingzone’, where the Golf Foundation was based during the whole of Open week courtesy of The R&A.
The HSBC Ambassadors first played ‘Tri-Golf’ with the children in a specially designed skills challenge. Tri-Golf is a fun, colourful, high-energy golf game which enables youngsters to learn the basics of the game in an easy format.
Then it was on to ‘StreetGolf’, the funky golf format in which older children invent their own games to suit their local environment, in this case firing skill shots at wheelie-bins, a tin can alley and opened golf umbrellas, all amid a colourful backdrop.
The youngsters and families present clearly enjoyed watching these stars help to promote the game to a new generation.
Brendon Pyle, National Development Manager for the Golf Foundation, said: “What a great performance by HSBC Ambassadors Jonathan, Gavin and Tim. They were all brilliant with the boys and girls and their highly competitive but sporting attitude was a lesson to all present in how to play sport in the right spirit. A great thanks to this trio and HSBC for helping to raise the profile of our HSBC Golf Roots work.”
HSBC played a major role for visitors of all ages during Open week. More than 50,000 people visited the HSBC Golf Zone, an interactive spectator experience which gives fans the chance to try different golf skills.
The R&A Swingzone is a facility provided by The R&A each year to grow the game. During the week, the zone welcomed several thousand young people to enjoy a golf experience.
Many youngsters also took advantage of the free lessons given by PGA Professionals throughout the week. The pro’s were present thanks to the Professional Golfers’ Association, who sponsor the professionals to teach the young golfers as part of the organisation’s commitment to junior golf.
HSBC Golf Roots is supported by The R&A, The European Tour, the Professional Golfers’ Association, the Ryder Cup Committee and Trust, England Golf, the British Golf Industry Association’s ‘Grow Golf’ Fund, Sport England and headline sponsor HSBC.
Golf Foundation www.golf-foundation.org