By Andrew Both
(Reuters) – Four years after being inspired by watching compatriot Justin Rose claim gold at the Rio Olympics, Bronte Law had all but secured a spot on the British golf team before the 2020 Tokyo Games were postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
With the Olympic qualifying period likely to be extended for another year, Law remains confident of maintaining her strong form to secure her ticket to Tokyo.
She flew back from her American base to her family home in Cheshire just before Britain went into lockdown earlier this week to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
With the LPGA Tour shut down indefinitely, Law, who won the 2015 English amateur by 16 strokes, will have plenty of time to ponder the Olympics.
“It’s been something on my mind for a couple of years now,” she told Reuters in a telephone interview.
“(During the 2016 Rio Games) I was still in college. To see (Rose win) made it very real as far as golf now being an Olympic sport.
“You can win grand slams in tennis and majors in golf, and all of those are incredible achievements but when you become a gold medal winner you become part of a very select group of incredible athletes that branch across all sports.”
Law is 18th on the Olympic qualifying list, the second-placed Briton, immediately behind Charley Hull and well ahead of 39th-ranked Georgia Hall.
Two British women will qualify.
“(The delay) is obviously very disappointing,” said Law.
“I really set my sights on Tokyo and have been playing well, and hope to continue to do that, so I’m not so concerned about making sure I make the team.”
Whenever the LPGA Tour resumes, the 25-year-old Law will be ready rather than rusty.
“We have a nice place with plenty of room and land and I figured I would be at least able to practice and have a gym at home here,” she said.
“We have land attached to the garden where I can hit a range of iron shots, not too many drivers but I’m planning on putting up a net. I don’t have it too badly here.”
Though Law is rarely venturing out because of the lockdown, her parents have been busy supplying packaging to food manufacturers.
“My parents are working non-stop and it’s just me and my sister at my house,” Law said. “We’re trying to do our best to not leave the house at all.”
That will soon change, however, as Law has signed up to deliver groceries to those most in need, including health workers who are working long hours due to the pandemic.
“It’s an unknown time for a lot of us but a time we can give back in a way we’re not always able to, having such busy schedules,” she said.
(Reporting by Andrew Both in Cary, North Carolina, editing by Pritha Sarkar)