Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 9 July 2020

Laura Davies doesn’t know Paige Spiranac yet, but she’s willing to give the web sensation a shot

While Laura Davies wouldn't know Paige Spiranac 'from a bar of soap' she nonetheless grants 'everyone needs a chance', including the first-time pro with an outsize profile in Dubai.
Laura Davies shown at a pre-tournament press conference on Tuesday in Dubai ahead of the Omega Dubai Ladies Masters. David Cannon / Getty Images / December 8, 2015
Laura Davies shown at a pre-tournament press conference on Tuesday in Dubai ahead of the Omega Dubai Ladies Masters. David Cannon / Getty Images / December 8, 2015

DUBAI // It is pretty safe to assume Paige Spiranac does not count Laura Davies among her legions of followers on Instagram or Twitter.

The American, 22, has been making waves at this week’s Omega Dubai Ladies Masters – her first professional tournament – much like she has done for most of the year on social media.

Billed as an internet sensation, Spiranac is switching lanes at Emirates Golf Club and accepted an organisers’ invite, as she seeks to back up her rising profile with a Dubai debut worthy of the acclaim.

That obviously has not stretched to Davies, though. A veritable doyen of women’s golf, the Englishwoman admitted Tuesday that she is not too familiar with Spiranac. With only 40,000 followers on Twitter and almost 500,000 on Instragam, who could blame her?

“I don’t know her from a bar of soap,” Davies said. “I really don’t.”

Given her standing in the game, however, Davies is well placed to discuss the merits of handing a relative novice one of the 108 spots in the season-concluding event on the 2015 Ladies European Tour.

“I’ve obviously heard what some of the players have said, but I’ve not met her,” Davies said. “I saw her last night at the players’ party, but didn’t speak to her. So I shouldn’t really ... I mean, good luck to her.

“Everyone needs a chance and if she’s a good player, then it’s great she’s here. If she’s here for any other reason than she’s a great golfer, then it’s a little bit pointless. But we have to give her a chance. She might go and win the tournament and then it’s the best decision ever made.”

That Davies did not know Spiranac should perhaps not come as surprise. At 30 years her senior, the woman with 85 victories worldwide has most probably been a little preoccupied with her profession to truly embrace the internet age.

“Well, I’m old‑fashioned,” Davies said. “I don’t like Tweeting. I don’t like Facebook. I’ve got none of that. I guess I have a Facebook account, but I’ve never touched it. Someone set that up for me and thought it would be funny, so that’s that. The Twitter one, maybe one or two Tweets a year, or whatever you call it.”

jmcauley@thenational.ae

Follow us on Twitter @NatSportUAE

Updated: December 8, 2015 04:00 AM

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