Graham and Michele Thomson during the Jabra Ladies Open at Evian Resort Golf Club in France in June. Image: Tristan Jones.
“To be honest, it was pretty scary at the time,” Thomson admitted, speaking of the incident that occurred during the first round of the Gant Ladies Open when she was about to make a home appearance at this week’s Trust Golf Women’s Scottish Open in Dumbarnie Links prepared.
“Of course I had no idea what was going on at the time. I actually thought papa had sunstroke. I carried on and had played three more holes when I saw the ambulance coming. That’s when I knew it obviously wasn’t sunstroke, so I got off the golf course at that point. I was just relieved that he was fine. “
Register to our daily newsletter
The i-newsletter cut through the noise
Graham revealed this was indeed the case and responded to a tweet about the incident by joking that he regretted not being able to continue working for his daughter “but positively I can see The Open!”
Thomson can now see the funny side of it for himself, adding, “I think he was more gutted when I left, but when that happens, golf is just golf and I wanted to make sure he was fine and he was goes well.
“He’s still not at 100 percent and it could take a while before he starts caddying again. I have a guy who’s a regular caddy on the LET this week and he’s a really good guy. “
Thomson is one of six Scots in the field for this week’s 1.1 million pound event, which not only has a new sponsor in Trust Golf, a Thai tech company, but also breaks new ground in terms of the venue.
Designed by Clive Clark, Dumbarnie Links only opened 15 months ago but has received rave reviews from a number of European Tour professionals from social visits along with an army of club golfers.
“I’ve played it twice in the past few days and it’s a fantastic course,” said Thomson, who flies the Saltire off the Fife coast with 2012 winner Carly Booth and Gemma Dryburgh, Kylie Henry, Kelsey MacDonald and Alison Muirhead.
“You have to putt well this week, I think, so getting iron strikes close helps. There are quite a few run-offs on the greens so missing on the right is important. I’m pretty much exact with my driver and there’s quite a bit of space. There are many options from teeing off. “
American Stacy Lewis is defending the title after taking the lead in a four-way play-off against compatriot Cheyenne Knight, Spaniard Azahara Munoz and Danish Emily Kristine Pedersen at the Renaissance Club last October.
“I think this is a fairer golf course,” Thomson said of the new venue. “If you take good shots, you’ll be rewarded here, while The Renaissance has bumps and bumps that can throw it off line. It’s just a wonderful golf course. “
The status of this event was increased when it was jointly sanctioned by LET and LPGA in 2017. In return, the men’s Genesis Scottish Open will count on both the European Tour and the PGA Tour next season.
“Everyone here is a great golfer and it’s good that the LPGA is involved in this event,” said Thomson, who will compete alongside Lewis against Olympic bronze medalist Lydia Ko and a number of other big winners.
“I just have to believe that I’m as good as everyone else here and out and doing my job. I’m really looking forward to this week and can’t wait to get started. “
The leading Scot on Sunday night will receive the Jock MacVicar Trophy, a new award in honor of the legendary golf writer after his death earlier this year. This price also includes a one-week training block at Trust Golf’s science-based golf training facility in Bangkok.
“This is amazing and I only realized that earlier this week,” said Thomson of the added incentive for the Caledonian contingent. “One of my main goals this week is to try and win that.”
Two-time winner Catriona Matthew is a notable absentee from this week’s line-up who welcomed one of the invitations to go to someone else on the occasion.
After playing at the US Senior Women’s Open in Connecticut and the Aramco Team Series in Spain for the past two weeks, Europe’s Solheim Cup captain spends some time with her family at home in North Berwick before joining the AIG Women’s next week Open back into action at Carnoustie.
“It was my decision,” said the 2011 and 2013 winner when she suspended the week’s event. “It’s summer vacation for the girls (daughters Katie and Sophie) and since I’ve been away for the past two weeks, I wanted to be with them this week
“I’ll be playing at Carnoustie next week and then only have about five days at home before I leave for the Solheim Cup.
“I didn’t want to accept another invitation this year either, as I used one last year and may be able to request an invite before the AIG Women’s Open in Muirfield next year, depending on the schedule. So I haven’t played my last Women’s Scottish Open yet! “
With plenty of points to be won, this week’s event is a great opportunity for Solheim Cup hopefuls to grab Matthew’s attention as their team is set to finalize right after the AIG Women’s Open.
“I’ll be on my way to Carnoustie on Sunday to watch,” added the 2009 Women’s Open winner, who finished fourth in the US Senior Women’s Open before coming just outside the top 10 in the Aramco Team Series landed.