Champion golfer Izzy selected for England

RISING golf star Izzy Knowles has been selected to represent England in the Home Nations championship in Portugal next year.

The honour comes hot on the heels of her success at the prestigious Junior British Masters final when the Ripon Grammar School Year 10 student claimed the U15 girls’ trophy following a dazzling performance which saw her post an impressive net score of 69.

Izzy and her Thirsk and Northallerton Golf Club team-mates will be heading to the Morgado Golf Resort in the Algarve in February for four days of competitive match play against the best junior teams from England, Wales, Ireland and Scotland.

They now need to raise £5,000 to pay towards the trip and, as part of their fundraising drive, the team of eight will be cycling 874 miles, equivalent to the distance from Land’s End to John O’Groats, on static bikes over 48 hours during the Christmas holidays.

The talented young players were picked as one of the top two teams of eight from each nation, selected from the lowest handicap up.

Izzy, 14, from Breckenbrough, Thirsk, who also represents Yorkshire, said: “I was very excited and proud to win the British Masters. Now I’m over the moon to be playing for England, but slightly nervous too.”

From a keen golfing family, she first started playing when she was just seven years old and, following five years training with Yorkshire, now has an outstanding handicap of just 16.

Izzy, who also plays cricket for Sessay Cricket Club and enjoys skiing, says she has made some great friends through golf: “Most people think of golf as a male sport but our club has a great group of girls, there are six of us in a team of 16.

One of her proudest moments was achieving a hole-in-one at Easingwold Golf Club in 2017: “I couldn’t believe it!”

A keen skier, who wants to study law at university, she would like to continue representing Yorkshire in golf and reduce her handicap sensibly: “I just want to keep enjoying it.”

Other fundraising events for the Home Nations championships trip include golf club raffles and auction and a GoFundMe page.

Izzy, below, pictured at the Junior British Masters final receiving her prize of a Ping golf bag from PGA professional Jonathan Lupton