Hashizoe’s Tips On Becoming a Top Professional | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Hashizoe’s Tips On Becoming a Top Professional

Professional women's golfer: Studied under her father, a professional golfer, and worked hard with her three older sisters

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A photo with his second sister, Kaoru (right), and his father, Junji. About 60% of the family’s conversations are golf-related.

Until now, my main goal has been to pass the professional test. I am really looking forward to competing on the professional stage for the first time this year and throughout the year!

Minori Hashizoe, 21, a professional women’s golfer, says this with a carefree smile. She is petite at 154 cm in height, but has a dynamic driver shot and stable irons, as well as a good overall ability to approach and putt around the greens. She passed the professional test last year, placing 5th overall.

Hashizoe, who will be competing on the women’s tour this season, has been immersed in the game of golf since she was a child. The youngest of four sisters, all of whom aspired to become professionals, Hashizoe is a member of a golfing family.

She is the youngest of four sisters, all of whom have aspired to become professionals in their own right. When I was a baby, I used to hold a golf ball instead of a toy. It felt very natural for me to become a pro even as a child. I don’t mean to be rude to my father, but I never once thought it was impossible for me to become a pro (laughs).”

My father taught me all the basics of golf. He says that his father taught him to “hit the ball in a good rhythm.”

“From elementary school through high school, I worked out three days a week at my father’s junior school. My father emphasized stance and rhythm. By emphasizing these two things, I was able to always hit the same way, even in tense situations. Now all of my sisters follow the same routine.

My father never told me to become a professional. In junior high school, my friends invited me to play more often, and my performance in competitions did not improve, but I was never forced to practice. They let me play freely, and I think that’s why I was able to continue playing golf without ever once hating it.”

Since childhood, the four sisters have engaged in friendly competition. The eldest, Minami, 33, is a single-year registered tour professional. The second daughter, Kaoru (28), competed in last year’s professional test. The third daughter, Megumi (25), is a talented player who served as the captain of the Meiji University golf club.

She said, “I was in an environment where if I didn’t do it myself, I would be all alone. I was the one who hated to lose the most, and I wanted to surpass all my sisters’ records. My biggest rival was  Kaoru. We still practice together for more than five hours every day.

While they are rivals, they are also a close family once the games are over. Nowadays, Hashizoe’s success is supported by the support of her sisters.

Last year, you failed in the second round of the professional test,” Hashizoe said. She must have been absolutely mortified, but after the test, she played a practice round with me and repeatedly said, ‘Mino, you can do it! He encouraged me. I have also had him caddie for me several times at the Miyagi Television Cup and other events. My third daughter, Megu, works for a major shaft manufacturer, UST. I work for Mamiya. All wood-related matters are adjusted by Megu-chan. She also remembers my physical specs, which I appreciate.”

With the support of her sisters in addition to her father’s guidance, she has reached the professional stage. He is looking forward to the title of a top pro, which he says he longs to become.

Last year I played a few professional tournaments, and I felt it was not out of reach. My dream is to become the annual queen of the Mercedes Ranking. I would love to achieve it and share the joy with my family.”

A new candidate for heroine has taken the first step toward achieving her dream.

Until now, my main goal has been to pass the professional test,” she said. I am really looking forward to competing on the professional stage for the first time this year and throughout the year!

Minori Hashizoe was born in Kofu City, Yamanashi Prefecture in 2000. This season, she is mainly competing on the Step Up Tour, a lower-level women’s professional tour, and is aiming for a higher ranking on the JLPGA Tour, which is the equivalent of the first division.

From the April 22, 2022 issue of FRIDAY

  • Interview, text, and photos Myung-Woo Kim

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