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Ng’s ‘never-say-die’ spirit is just what local golf needs

PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF Nikki Ng WITH mental toughness beyond her years, Reese Allyson Ng is one very promising golfer for Team Philippines.

Last weekend, 15-year-old Filipino junior golf standout Reese Allyson Ng fired a clutch, final-hole birdie to yank out the Asian Junior Masters victory from a determined Chinese opponent.

That victory evokes memory of almost two years ago when Ng pulled off something similar, scoring a come-from-behind feat for her first international victory.

The nerves of steel were there even back then.

“At the beginning I was little bit nervous, but as the game progressed, I told myself to focus on my game and take it shot by shot,” Ng told Tribune Golf.

She’s talking about her recent feat at Black Mountain Golf Club at Hua Hin District in Thailand.

“The only person I could control out there on the course was myself and all I could do was to give 100 percent on all of my shots.”

True enough, she got a grip of the dire situation — a head-on collision with Shixin Kang down the final hole — and executed a master stroke.

A birdie on the 18th. For the Girls’ Class A top prize.

“It felt great. My win in Thailand also gave me a sense of relief that my game is trending in the right direction and that my hard work is paying off,” Ng said.

Such effort is all the more remarkable coming from a 10th grader at British School Manila. She’s only about to finish her sophomore year with the International General Certificate of Secondary Education examination this May.

She’s about to begin working on her International Baccalaureate Diploma.

“Yes, I really want to play college golf in an Ivy League or D1 university,” she said.

Ng picked up the sport at six years old, influenced largely by her father and brother who are into the sport ahead of her.

Golf, according to her, “helped me strengthen my bond with my cousins and uncles, as we frequently play golf together or talk about it over dinner.”

“Golf helps me have good time management, as whenever I am abroad for a tournament, I will need to be able to strike a balance between my academics and sport.”

Outside of golf, Ng loves baking.

“I may not be too good at it but I really enjoy unwinding in the kitchen after school or golf.”

Already one of the leading junior golfers in the country, Ng has represented the Philippines in the international stage.

Most memorable for her is the 2022 American Junior Golf Association’s Windham Mountain Resort Junior All-Star in New York.

“It was my first win in the US and was come-from-behind,” she said.

Now Ng gets to range herself against the grownups when she sees action in the Philippine Ladies Open at Manila Golf on 20 to 22 February.

There, the “never-say-die” character Ng is developing would come in handy.

A breath of fresh air in the sport which is trying to shed its reputation for being tedious and uneventful — at least to non-players.

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