Wales Golf High Performance Squads streamlined to develop more stars
Wales Golf High Performance squads are being streamlined to focus on producing more stars of the future, while also competing strongly on the international stage.
The number of golfers in the squads across men, ladies, girls and boys has been gradually reduced to the inclusion of approximately 40 players this year.
The move is geared towards targeting the support and guidance from Wales Golf in a more effective manner to shift the programme completely towards high performance, in line with High Performance Strategy launched this year by Wales Golf and agreed by Sport Wales and other funding partners.
The change is aimed at producing more Welsh golfers who win on the amateur European and world stage, with squad selection based around those principles.
While it will mean some current Wales internationals will not be included in squads on this occasion, the door will not be closed on anyone performing strongly in terms of representing their country in 2020.
“Selection for Wales teams will not depend on being part of the High Performance squad system” said Wales Golf Director of Performance Gillian O’Leary.
“The Wales Golf High Performance strategy launched this year is aimed at inspiring amateur golfers to win on the world stage, so we have selected the squads around those principles.
“With this in mind, our high performance team of coaches and service providers will look to design individual performance plans for players, supporting what they do with their personal performance team, and determining how Wales Golf can best add value, in order to get the most out of our resources.
“We want to support players who are truly committed to improving, with the desire and work ethic required to reach the highest levels of the game. We want the Welsh flag to be flying high at European and world events.”
By directing support to fewer players, the aim is to build on recent Welsh amateur golf successes by players such as Archie Davies and Ffion Tynan picking up titles outside of Wales.
The hope is to produce more successful amateur players, and potentially professional players, to follow in the footsteps of Ian Woosnam, Becky Brewerton, Phil Price, Amy Boulden, Bradley Dredge and Lydia Hall, as well as all the other Welsh professionals.
The 41 players (26 male and 15 female) will be made up of four squads – Academy, Aspire, Transition and High Performance.
These squad programmes will consist of varying levels of contact time in terms of group squad training days, planning and periodic review meetings, technical assessments and coaching support delivered by National Coaches Neil Matthews, Paul Williams and Gareth James.
Dr Zach Gould will oversee the Strength and Conditioning programmes for squads and individuals which will delivered by Jason Vaughan and James Shaw, while Dr Rich Neil will oversee the mindset programme which will be delivered by Hamish Cox and Charlotte Williams.
The maximum levels of support will obviously be aimed at the High Performance squad, who are likely to form the core of Wales teams in the six person European Team and three person World Championships events.
2019-20 Wales Golf High Performance Programme
Lea Anne Bramwell