Best Father’s Day- Mike Simon
Ashleigh Simon returns home to South Africa on Tuesday for a short stopover after clinching her first Ladies European Tour event in Spain on Sunday, becoming the youngest Pro golfer ever to achieve it.
Simon heads off to America shortly thereafter, having accepted a prestigious invitation to tee off with the elite of the women’s game in the $2million HSBC Women’s World Match Play Championship, at the Wykagyl Country Club in New York.
Speaking to gsport on Sunday, an emotional Mike Simon, said its probably the biggest moment that he has experienced with his daughter, Ashleigh, but it was just unfortunate that he couldn’t be with her in Spain.
“I’m quite emotional, because it is Father’s Day… She said to me this morning that she’s going to give me a Father’s Day to remember, and, yeah, the rest is history.
“Unfortunately she was hell-of-a sick last night (Saturday), she’d eaten something, and she’d been throwing up from about 2:30am to 5:00am, so we were kind of worried about her… But, yeah, she went and did it for herself and for her family, and her country, so a big moment!”
Mike was quick to pay tribute to the many people who have supported Ashleigh on her journey from amateur to Pro.
“Yeah, we were just pleased that she got all the invites that she had got, those were all bonuses, and it’s been very stressful because we’ve a short period to work with these invites, and get her visa’s, and get her to places.
“Just looking back, everybody that’s helped Ashleigh, it’s not us as her family, there’s been a number of people behind Ashleigh over the last few years, and it’s all come together, and everybody can today share in this wonderful joy that we’re experiencing as her family.
Emotions ran high at Royal Johannesburg and Kensington Golf Club last month when Ashleigh Simon announced that she was going professional, and had signed with global sports management company IMG and sports merchandise giant, Nike.
According to her dad, two more corporate sponsors will shortly be signing up Ashleigh shortly. “IMG has just phoned me five minutes ago from London.”
“They were absolutely over the moon, thrilled with her performance, not only today, but the way that she performed in the last two tournaments that she played in, where she played and made the cut.
“And I’ve already had phone calls from Nike Australia (who she falls under), who are absolutely thrilled. They followed her the whole week, and everybody’s enormously pleased about this final result she got today, and the way she pulled it through.”
Mike told gsport he can’t wait for Ashleigh to arrive home tomorrow for a short visit before heading off to the US. “She’s got two big Tournaments in America, and you know she’ll take a lot out of this past three weeks that she’s had in Europe.
“Conditions were very tough in Ireland and in Amsterdam, and yeah, she’ll take that to the States, which is a place that she really relishes playing in, and yeah, hopefully her good form will hold going forward!”