Born and raised in Athlone, Traigh Pathon hit his first ball when he was 14 months old. At the age of 18 months, he appeared in a Pampers advert because of his ‘golf stance’ and now at the age of 7, he is already one of the world’s best young golfers.
Traigh played in his first South African tournament at the age of 4 and eventually became the overall Western Cape champ in the 5 to 6 age category. He has come first in his last 3 South African tournaments and in total, he has come first in six competitions, second in five competitions, third in four competitions and fourth in three competitions. He is also the youngest member at the Royal Cape Golf Club in Ottery, the oldest golf course in South Africa.
In his first international tournament at San Lameer Golf Estate in August 2017, he came third in his age category and shot a qualifying score which gave him entry into international competitions. In December 2017, he finished 8th place at the Kids Golf World Championships in Malaysia and was officially recognised as one of the world’s best and most promising young golfers. He was also the top South African golfer in his age category. Over the next 2 years, he will be competing in the Australian, European and US Kids Open golfing tournaments.
Traighs success as a golfer comes down to the support and encouragement he gets from his family. He picked up his love of golf from his grandparents, his mom is his manager and his dad is his caddy. He also loves watching golf competitions and highlights on TV with his dad. His mom, Tiara, says that she feels sad knowing that his granddad passed away before Traigh took up the sports. She says that she sees a lot of Traigh in his granddad.
Traigh is usually the tiniest golfer in his age category but he can hit the ball further than competitors twice his size. His performance can be attributed to a combination of sheer power and a disciplined work ethic, a trait he gets from Tiara. The hard working mom started her own business, she is a founding director of an NGO that helps empower women and she helps out with any charity that needs her skill set. Golfing is an expensive sport so Tiara is also busy raising funds and hopefully, she will raise enough money to get him to every tournament.
Traigh enjoys playing video games and reading books. He is an especially huge fan of the Dr Seuss books. His parents are very proud of him but they still want to make sure he grows as a normal kid. Despite his talent, they do not want the game of golf to burn him out, so for now, they will make sure that he enjoys being a kid, doing his homework and having fun.
Sources: News24 (edited from an article written by Tiyese Jeranji), other