-by Kerrie Alexander
WHETHER it’s in the loungeroom at home or on the golf course, it’s not often you will see Hervey Bay’s Rebekah Mizzi without a golf club in her hand.
It’s that passion for the sport that has seen the nine-year-old soar to great heights in golf after representing Australia at the Trans-Tasman Junior Golf Cup held in New Zealand earlier this year.
The junior star finished third in her age group.
Her proud dad Chris said Rebekah (picture far right) first teeing off at a young age was the ideal way to spend more time together, but it was soon evident that she was a natural.
“I am a golfer and at first it was a way for her to spend more time with her dad, but then she started hitting the ball and we noticed she was pretty good at it,” Chris said.
“She’s always practicing, always in the loungeroom with her putter … whenever she can do it, she’s doing it.
“I really enjoy it because it’s a fun and challenging,” Rebekah added.
Chris said he was incredibly proud of his daughter’s performance in New Zealand, given it was her first time travelling overseas for such a prestigious event.
“I was extremely proud. The level that she has progressed to is amazing; she is playing against 14 and 15-year-old kids now and she’s only nine.
“The competition gave Rebekah the chance to be seen by some of the best golf professionals in Australia and New Zealand and was also a chance for her to springboard her golf career at such a young age.
“The sky is the limit.”
Rebekah said a few nerves did set in, but it was the time difference that was challenging to adjust to before hitting the course.
“I was very nervous, excited and cold … we teed off at 7am which was like 4am Queensland time so I was tired as well,” she said.
“But is was great to make new friends and compete against our neighbouring country in New Zealand.”
Now being coached four days a week by Chris and twice a week by professionals at the Hervey Bay Golf Club, Rebekah has her sights set on blitzing the field in March 2021 at the Trans-Tasman Cup in Noosa Springs.
After recently being promoted to a full course size, Rebekah is also giving dad a run for his money.
“If I had the sort of short game, she had I’d be a much better golfer,” he said with a laugh.
“Kids have a little less fear, so they go for their shots a little bit more than what us grown-ups do, they don’t overthink it.”
Chris also gave thanks to everyone who helped financially to get Rebekah to the New Zealand event, including the Hervey Bay RSL who awarded $500 from the Hervey Bay RSL Community Grants Program to help cover the cost of flights and accommodation.
Many fellow golf club members also made donations to help see Rebekah fulfill her dream of competing overseas.