British Sensation Hull is Hanging Tough at Mediheal, Living Life Fully
It is such an interesting ride, to begin following a star in their childhood or early youth. If you become a fan, a little piece of vicarious parenting can come along with the deal. The young phenom is likely a person we will never meet, although it is possible if one hangs around after the day’s round. I’ve enjoyed following the progress of nearly all the young sensations from the last decade, all of whom are now adults. On one hand, their games are growing up, too, but on the other, golf does not remain the center of the universe for everyone. In the case of Charley Hull, she seems not to have diminished one universe for the other. She approaches golf with red hot competitiveness. What does a person like that do when other life interests emerge such as love?
I can only guess, and can’t say anything with certainty about Hull’s life view. However, the appearance of it is that she has so much intensity stored up that she just created a second universe for the most important person in her life.
I am still waiting for Charley to tee off at the LPGA Mediheal Championship at Daly City. So far, she’s playing with a lot of abandon. Entering the final day, she is three strokes shy of the lead held by Sei Young Kim. There are other people I’d rather lag by three strokes, but oh well, we get what we get and we do what we do.
For Hull, that’s all the better. She likes it tough. I don’t sense much wallflower or shrinking violet going on in there. The harder the course, the better – longer, higher rough, give me the works. Hull grew up as a giant killer, winning matches and tournaments over established champions at each level.
Her love interest might say a lot about her general nature. He is Ozzie Smith, Hall of Fame shortstop and a gifted martial arts fighter who has already achieved title fights. Smith is there in Daly City today, just as Charley was for his recent title fight, missing a week of the tour. They’ve got each other’s back, and Hull reminds us that Smith has sacrificed for her career as well. Career power struggles between talented couples are to be found literally everywhere, and in pretty much any profession. Anyone who has the good of both careers at heart is probably going to do well. What was Hull supposed to do, anyway? He proposed to her on Christmas Day.
For some odd reason, I keep track of long it takes for an obvious prodigy to start winning once they hit the tour. I kept mental notes for Lexi, Paula, Lydia and all the rest, although Lydia barely gave me enough time to get my pencil out. While other golfers are doing their best to dethrone you, life is taking its share of whacks as well,. Charley Hull won the CME Group Tour Championship in 2016, along with two European championships. She seems right on schedule as that magical childhood time evaporates, giving way to the next chapter.
With a young female golfer who loves the fight of it, and one who is soon to marry a man who feels the same way, life might have to work a little harder to trip them up. Some marry opposites to check more boxes of helpful opposite talents. Some marry opposites to challenge their own blind spots. Some marry the same type to keep the professional and personal temperature high, and for a host of other reasons of which I am not even aware. Charley Hull seems to love it that way – make it more difficult…bring on the challenge.