Golfing sensation Addie Francis has signed a full scholarship with Cameron university in Oklahoma to study a degree in Psychology and play on their golf team.
First appearing in the Chronicle 12 years ago, Addie was named a gold prodigy after winning the Celtic Manor’s 2010 Ryder Cup at just age five.
Even at such a young age, people in Addie’s life knew she would be successful in her golfing career and many shared their thoughts in articles in the Chronicle.
In 2010, her coach at the time, James Morgan, told the Chronicle: “Addie in my opinion is particularly talented. As soon as she picked up the club you could see she had a lot of natural ability.
“She took to golf like a duck to water and I think if she continues to apply herself the way she has been, she will go a long way in the game.”
In 2011 when Addie was 5 years old, Addie's mum, Tracey told the Chronicle: “You can tell by the way she is so disciplined and focused about practicing that she definitely loves the sport, and fortunately enough it seems to love her right back.”
"We would never dream of being pushy parents when it comes to Addie. In fact, it's quite the opposite, sometimes I have to limit the amount of training Addie wants to do because she is only young and there needs to be a balance.
"To be honest, I can't see her ever not wanting to play golf, but as long as she's happy and healthy, that's the most important thing.”
Both seemed to predict Addie's future as she continued to apply herself leading her on to secure the only spot available on this course for 2023.
Addie explained how she’s both “nervous and excited” about her move to America.
She said: “I have the nerves of leaving my friends and family and starting everything again but I have the excitement of the opportunities I will get from this scholarship.”
To get accepted into this university on a full scholarship, you have to have a GPA of at least 3.5 which is calculated through your grades at GCSE and at A levels meaning Addie had to sacrifice many golf competitions over the past two years to keep up with her education.
She explained how it was difficult to miss out on so many golf competitions but her academic success ended up playing a vital role in Addie receiving the scholarship as many applicants would miss out because they relied on their golfing ability alone.
In an article in the Chronicle in 2015, Tracey explained how her daughters golfing journey happened almost accidentally.
She said: “Someone I work with asked me to drop off some papers off for her at Alice Springs golf club.
“It was the first time I had ever been to a golf club in my life.
“Addie could see ladies hitting balls and asked if she could have a go.
“James Morgan, the pro there at the time, heard and offered Addie a little club.
“Even then she was tall for her age so could hit the balls and so he asked me where she played.
“I said she had never picked up a club before, so he joked that we should take her back and we might have a Welsh champion one day!”
As Addie prepares to begin studying for her psychology degree in August, she would like to thank everyone involved in her journey so far. Including James Morgan, Neil Matthews, Monmouthshire junior and ladies county golf, Golf Development Wales, British junior golf tour, Irene Dodd, Antony Chandler, Brian Edwards, merthyr college, Monmouthshire golf club, Newport golf club and Andraus from Case Bianca Abergavenny.