Eddie Ward and Travis Smyth at Kiama Golf Club
Travis Smyth has not forgotten where he came from, nor how hard it is to become more than just good at the sport he loves.
Now, with the help of one of his friends, Adam Barnard, his sponsors and St. Michael & # 39; s Golf Club connections, the rookie tour professional has set up an annual scholarship, which he hopes will be the talented Illawarra Junior golfers will help pursue their dreams.
The decision to start a scholarship was something that Smyth had wanted to do for a while. He said it was important that he could help.
"I wanted to give young players of the Illawarra the chance to play in the major competitions in Sydney and gain access to coaches and what it is like to be in the professional environment.
It is primarily about opening doors that could otherwise be closed to emerging players, "Smyth said.
The first recipient of the Travis Smyth Scholarship is Kiama, 16-year-old Eddie Ward.
As part of the scholarship, Ward will be a member of Sydney & # 39; s St. Michael & # 39; s Golf Club, the home course of Smyth, as well as elite training opportunities, including help from Smyth & mentor, John Serhan, conditioning from renowned mental coach John Novak, physiological assistance from Matt Green and membership in the gym of Smyth & # 39; s sponsor Anytime Fitness.
"It's hard to take the next step if you're not in Sydney," Smyth added. "I look back now and wish I could spend more time on technology when I was Eddie's age, so it's an important part of your development if you want to make it to professional ranks."
"I didn't really know Eddie, I certainly knew him and I know he's a great young talent, so hopefully it's great to help him on that path."