Carly Booth made it consecutive home wins in the Aberdeen Asset Management Ladies Scottish Open last year, after Catriona Matthew’s success in 2011.
Locals are hoping to make it a hat-trick of home titles this week, with eight Scots in the field. The 21-year-old Scot Booth returns to Archerfield Links in East Lothian to defend the national Open.
Having broken through with her first win on the LET Access Series at the Dinard Ladies Open at the start of her third season as a professional last year, Booth quickly followed by two wins on the LET, in Scotland and Switzerland.
She has received more attention for her nude ESPN photo shoot than her golf results this year, but despite missing 10 cuts from 12 starts on the LET, she feels that her game is as strong as ever: “Swing wise it feels as good as last year if not better.”
Booth’s season-best finish is a tie for 27th at the Volvik RACV Ladies Masters in Australia in February and she was 62nd at the Turkish Airlines Ladies Open in May.
Speaking to the gathered media at Archerfield on Thursday, Booth said that she has hired a psychologist, Andy Duncan, to help her recover.
“I’m working on the mental side because that’s where I’m struggling the most,” she said. “I’m trying to stay positive. I’ve been working hard on my golf game.
“My expectations were a lot higher for this year and I’ve been pushing myself a little bit. Being in contention for The Solheim Cup I put extra pressure on myself which back fired a little bit but I’m moving forward and there’s another Solheim in two years time so I’m working towards that.”
One thing that isn’t a worry is her fitness, but Booth says that she stopped taking tips from her commonwealth games silver medallist father Wallace a long time ago.
“My dad’s living in the 70s!” she says. “My dad’s like, ‘I could get you up in that gym with my wrestling friends.’ But I’m not a wrestler. He doesn’t quite understand that. I’m training to be a golfer.”