|Margaret (Craddock) Jones extracted from newspaper articles|
Charley was first introduced to golf aged two, and began playing with her father at Kettering Golf Club. She left school aged 13 to be home schooled, and started playing in amateur tournaments. Charley turned professional on 1 January 2013. She has finished in the top 10 of the three majors so far.
Article from Northants Telegraph, 5 July 2018
CHARLEY’S FINAL-DAY SURGE SEALS A TOP-10 FINISH AT KEMPER LAKES
Charley Hull recorded her third consecutive top 10 finish in a major as she grabbed a share of sixth prize in the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship at Kemper Lakes near Chicago.
The Kettering golfer opened with an excellent score of 68, added rounds of 75 and 72, before surging up the leader board after shooting seven birdies and an eagle in a thrilling five-under-par 67 on the final day.
Article by James Corrigan from The Daily Telegraph 26 July 2018
CHARLEY HULL has been a prodigy for so long that, now 22, she remembers barely anything from the first time she teed it up on the professional fairways alongside the best players in the world.
“Yeah, but I was only 10,” Hull points out.
Those of us who were at Royal Lytham & St Annes that August Wednesday in 2006 only too readily recall the girl from Northamptonshire with her blonde hair poking out from under a bobble hat.
It was the pro-am of the Women’s British Open and she had earned her place to play alongside Morgan Pressel soon to become the then youngest ever winner of a women’s major as an 18-year-old by dint of her victory at the British Ladies National Championship nine months before.
Hull, who was nine years old and had to travel to that Turnberry event in a booster seat, actually fell over twice because of the wind raging off the Firth of Clyde, but still she beat a 46-year-old in the final. From then on, the word was that here was a plucky little character who simply would not be blown off course.
That much was confirmed at Lytham as the game at large gained its first glimpse of the pony-tailed sensation. Barely four feet tall, she was cheered on in astonishment by the crowds while, playing up ahead, Annika Sorenstam, arguably the greatest woman golfer of all time, waited to congratulate Hull after a few age and size-defying strikes.
“I do remember Annika being kind,” Hull says. “And yeah I remember playing quite well, but that’s about it.
“It’s funny, but that’s my one and only time I’ve played Lytham so far, and all I know is that it starts with a par three.”
Hull will finally return to the Lancashire venue next week as the principal domestic hope to lift the Women’s British Open title,* and it would complete the circle very nicely, especially for those who took up the 25-1 odds swiftly posted by bookmakers for that mere slip of a lass to win a major before she turned 25.
Yet first comes this week’s Aberdeen Standard Investments Ladies Scottish Open at Gullane, the $1.5 million (£1.15 million) event co-sanctioned by the Ladies European Tour and LPGA Tour.
Two weeks after the men used the East Lothian layout as the forerunner for the Open Championship, the women follow suit and Hull cannot wait.
“It’s a big tournament with a great field and of course you want to win, but at the same time it’s the perfect warm-up for the British. I haven’t played on links for a year and have been really looking forward to it. Although, truthfully I didn’t think much of this type of golf as a kid. Maybe it was that the weather always seemed to be cold and rainy, but I preferred whacking it on parkland courses.
“I suppose it was only when I turned pro and was not playing it all the time like I had on the amateur circuit that I realised how much I missed it after all those pattern, target-golf courses in America.”
Hull seems born for the seaside pursuit, what with her ability to control ball-flight and her preference for a searching challenge. This year she has shown how much she relishes golf when it is on the edge, by finishing in the top three of each of the three majors contested so far. At the Ana Inspiration in March she was two shots outside the play-off in sixth, before a highly respectable 10th at the US Women’s Open in June and another sixth place at the Women’s PGA three weeks ago.
There have been some other notable results in 2018, not least her third behind Lydia Ko in the LPGA Mediheal Championship, but the standout displays have been in the weeks that matter most. It is not a coincidence. As they say Stateside, Hull is “trending” and her self-belief levels are as obvious as they are understandable.
“The majors this year have definitely given me confidence going into this two-week stretch,” Hull said. “I’m getting closer and closer and know what it takes now. And I prefer the major golf courses, prefer tougher courses. I don’t like layouts when they’re short and fat, but when they’re long and tight. You get rewarded for good shots and punished for bad ones. That’s how it should be.
“The other week the LPGA Tour played on a course where the winner was like, 31 under or something. I played and, to be honest, I thought it was a bit stupid. The course was just like a big field and then it just turns into a putting competition. And, in my opinion, that’s silly, boring golf.
“There’s nothing boring about links, though. You need to use your imagination and create your shots around it.”
Professional golfers would never admit as much, but many adore “boring”, particularly when the notorious links bounces are factored in. Not Hull.
Famously laid-back, that mythical golfing quality of “acceptance” is in her DNA. “I don’t stress it. At the end of the day, it’s just a game and you’re not going to die if you play a poor shot. “I think a lot of players put so much pressure on themselves that they don’t enjoy it. Whereas my way, I love the game to pieces, and you just go out there. Try your best and have fun.”
In this sense, Hull can be seen as the ultimate natural, and that is why she will attract some of the biggest galleries in Gullane these next four days. What you see with her is what you get and it happens to be one of the most refreshing and pleasurable sights in the game.
“I’ve always been that way, I guess: hit the shot, move on and hit it again. That’s just the way I am. I’ve never had a mental coach or anything. Yeah, I get angry in my head sometimes, but I’ve never taken it out on anyone yet.
“I don’t even look at scoreboards too much. I never know my world ranking, or where I am in the money lists or anything unless someone tells me. I’m not really interested in all that stuff. It’s just the playing golf bit that interests me.”
* (Unfortunately Charley failed to make the cut on this occasion)
PERFECT START TO THE YEAR AS HULL SEALS FINE SUCCESS
IN ABU DHABI
Charley Hull made the best possible start to 2019 when she claimed a wire-to-wire victory in the Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies open to earn her second Ladies European Tour trophy.
The Burton Latimer star, who is a member at Kettering Golf Club, fired rounds of 67, 72 and 69 in warm and sandy conditions for a total of eight-under-par 208 at the spectacular Saadiyat Beach Golf Club in Abu Dhabi, ending one stroke ahead of Marianne Skarpnord.
The Norwegian set the clubhouse target at seven-under-par and Hull needed a par on the last hole to seal the victory, which she delivered in style, getting up and down from a bunker behind the 18th green, with her new fiancé, Ozzie Smith, watching on.
Smith proposed with a diamond ring at Christmas and now the pair have another reason to celebrate, with the prospect of another season of stunning success ahead, including a potential fourth Solheim Cup appearance in Scotland in September. “I’ve practised really, really hard over the winter and it feels great to win back on the LET, especially since I had my first pro win in Morocco five years ago,” said Hull, the Rookie of the Year in 2013 who went on to win the Order of Merit in 2014.
”Hopefully I can get a few more wins this year and I’ve been practising really hard so it shows that my hard work is paying off.”
Charley meanwhile moved up to 23rd position in the ladies world rankings following her victory in the above event. The Kettering golfer, who clinched her third victory as a professional by a single shot, is the third highest placed European in the standings behind 2018 British Open champion Georgia Hall (eighth) and Spain's Carlota Ciganda (15th).
Click here for details of Charley's success in the Solheim Cup 2019 and also in the LPGA's season-ending Tour Championship