Inadequate funds threaten Oboh’s march to stardom
Teenage sensation returns to Europe next week
She is acknowledged as the nearest Nigeria has ever gotten to international stardom in golf. The 16-year-old Georgia Oboh has been described by various international publications as one of the biggest prospects in the game and to ensure she continued her upward movement; she is invited to play in almost all major Ladies championships across the world.
Such is her rising profile that Georgia Oboh is among the first junior players listed in almost all the major championships billed for the current season. She is destined for greatness despite all the challenges she has had to face in her young career.
One of such problems is finance, which is threatening to halt her ambition of becoming one of the greatest players the women game has ever seen.
Oboh, who has been training and conditioning herself in Nigeria since last month, is expected to move to Europe next week to continue her practice and training sessions at the Terceira Golf Club, Terceira, Portugal ahead of the Azores Ladies Open, which tees off at the same club from April 21.
She is among the few junior players from across the world privileged to be invited to the championship, but her participation in the event depends on her ability to secure sponsorship on time.
According to her father, Godfrey Oboh, who has been her coach since she was six, getting sponsors to key into Georgia’s success has been a Herculean task.
Since Georgia returned to Nigeria, her father has been training her at the Ikoyi Club and the Lakowe Golf Resort hoping that they would secure the sponsorship that would help them to keep to her busy programme.
“We have approached many companies, including MTN, Airtel, Glo, Dangote and many other companies, but nothing has come out of our efforts so far.
“We are talking with Wakanow right now and unless we are able to get sponsors we may be forced to miss some of these important competitions.
“We met with the Minister of Sports this week and he promised to see us later. We hope it works out,” Godfrey Oboh said.
To Georgia, being in Nigeria is another opportunity to impact on the lives of the younger ones, some of who see her as their role model.
She has been to schools, including Greensprings Schools, to mentor the students and teach them the rudiments of the game. This is aside her weekend clinics at the Ikoyi Club, where she teaches the young ones how to play the game.
The 2015 World Teen champion, who describes the qualifiers for the LPGA’s first tournament of the Year, the Pure Silk Bahamas Classic, as her toughest challenge this season, will be back at the Ikoyi Club tomorrow to continue teaching the children the ways of the game.
She told The Guardian yesterday that being back in Nigeria has given her the opportunity to reconnect with her family and friends, as well as continue training for the challenges of the Tour.
“The weather in Europe is not conducive for the game right now so I am also using this opportunity to continue training. I must say that we have some great facilities in Nigeria. Lakowe has great start towards championship golf, while the Ikoyi Club has been able to maintain its course to a high standard,” She said.
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