Tiffany in dreamland - HK Olympian Chan blazes new trail by qualifying for LPGA Tour

Sports | 5 Dec 2017

Tiffany Chan Tsz-ching is over the moon after making history as the first Hong Kong golfer to qualify for the LPGA Tour.

The 24-year-old Olympian came through in sensational fashion over five rounds of intense golf as she earned her Tour card at her first attempt at Qualifying School.

With a three-under par 69 in the final round of Q-School at the LPGA International in Daytona, Florida, Chan finished on 11-under 349 - just one shot behind top qualifier Nasa Hataoka of Japan.

"I don't know if I'm still dreaming," Chan said. "It's actually my mom's birthday today, she's not here, but I'm going to give this to her for her present. My parents don't really know golf but they just encourage me."

A group of supporters led by Laura Brown, her coach from Daytona State, where she started her college career before moving to the University of Southern California, witnessed Chan achieve her dream of joining the elite in women's golf.

"I worked really hard to prepare myself the last two months," she said. "Being the first one on the LPGA is really big for Hong Kong golf."

Chan's rise has been nothing short of phenomenal, starting with her unexpected victory at the Hong Kong Ladies Open as an amateur last year. She then went on to earn enough ranking points to qualify for the Rio Olympics as Hong Kong's representative. Having earned the right to play against the likes of world No 1 Feng Shanshan of China and New Zealand prodigy Lydia Ko, Chan now hopes to inspire more Hong Kong youngsters to take up golf.

"I know there are a lot of junior golfers that want to go to college and turn pro and I think me being the first will help," said Chan, a product of the Hong Kong Golf Association.

"I definitely want to inspire the youth in Hong Kong and this was a major step."

As a rookie on this season's second-tier Symetra Tour, she recorded four top-10 finishes in 13 starts including runner-up at the Decatur-Forsyth Classic.

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