A teams event in Paris should be the next evolution for Olympic golf according to Hannah Green who is still buzzing off her Tokyo high as she looks to add a second major championship to her resume.
Green had Australia on the edge of its collective seat as she made a final day medal surge earlier this month that ended with her coming up just short of the podium in a tie for fifth.
The 24-year-old headed straight from the cauldron in Japan, where the heat was so intense cooling vests were required post-round, to the cooler climate of Scotland where she missed the cut at last weekend’s Scottish Open.
Olympic teammate Minjee Lee also struggled but both used their early exit to head straight to Carnoustie where Australia’s most recent major champions will battle it out for British Open honours.
“It was hard, I‘m not going to lie, going from 40-plus degree heat (in Tokyo) and then coming to Scotland where it’s about 17, 18 degrees is quite a shock,” Green said from Scotland.
“I think just being on a high and coming from the Olympics, it is quite hard to come down.
“I really do enjoy Scotland and I do enjoy this test of golf. I didn‘t feel like I had my best last week but maybe I’m a little more fresh than some of the girls who played on the weekend and hopefully I can use that to my advantage this week and play well.”
Green has put the 2024 Paris Games on her agenda and would be all for a tweak to a teams event rather than solo scoring having lived through the efforts of Cameron Smith and Marc Leishman in the men’s event.
“Yeah, I think it would be great. I feel like even if worst-case scenario they made it two scores counting towards the day, for instance, Minjee and myself,” Hannah said.
“I know that Leish (Leishman) didn‘t have the best week you wanted in Tokyo, but then Marc was just playing for the sake of playing, but Cam (Smith) did really well.
“It would have been great if both of them were thinking about each other’s scores and yet there was some sort of team event.”
Green made the bold decision to leave the tour early this year before Lee scorched to victory in her first ma major at the Evian Championship.
Confessing to battling to being away from home for too long, Green did two weeks hotel quarantine so she could spend time at home in Perth before going to the Olympics.
It was the only way she could see herself playing out the rest of this season and is hopeful her decision to take a break pays off, even if it’s not on the course.
“I wasn‘t going to be home until November and that was the only time I could see me going back to Australia,” she said.
“Unfortunately, I did miss the Evian Championship, which was a bummer, but I watched Minjee win. And even though I might not have great results coming the end of the year, at least mentality I will be happy and I won’t be wishing that I had gone home and regret that I didn’t.
“I always struggled being away from Australia, and Covid hasn‘t helped with that. Last year I was on the road for five months. I just did three months a few weeks ago, and I’ll be on the road again for another few months.
“I feel like we are kind of lucky because every week does go pretty quickly, but I feel like sometimes it does go slow, and I think I just needed the mental recharge more than the physical.”
Green and Lee will be joined by fellow Aussies Steph Kyriacou, Katherine Kirk, Sarah Kemp, Whitney Hillier and Su Oh in the field this week.
Playing at Carnoustie, with her mum’s Scottish relatives set to cheer her on from behind the ropes, is another reason for Green to be excited for the week and her chances.
“I feel like we’re so lucky to be playing Carnoustie. I feel like watching it on the TV and watching the men play here, and obviously it’s been 10 years since the women last played here,” she said.
“Even when I drove in, I was kind of just smiling the entire way and even on the golf course. I feel like at least that’s one positive that if you don’t have such a great hole, you look at the bigger picture and are like, ‘I’m playing Carnoustie, this is pretty damn cool’.”