Henni Goya says golf has not always been a hospitable environment

Golf remains an elitist sport, says player-turned-pundit Henni Goya

When Henni Goya won the first golf tournament she entered as a young girl she knew the sport was for her.

By the age of 13 she was identified as one of the sport’s rising stars, handpicked by Nick Faldo to join Team Faldo – his elite group of talented young golfers including four-time major winner Rory McIlroy and Solheim Cup star Mel Reid.

But while the player-turned-pundit – born to an English father and a Mauritian mother – enjoyed her developmental years in the sport, Goya found golf clubs were not always a welcoming environment.

“I guess through my golf I earned respect,” she says in episode 12 of Sky Sports’ My Icon series.

My Icon is a 31-part series on Sky Sports Mix, bringing you interviews with BAME sportsmen and women every day in October

“Golf clubs are [sometimes] very hostile places, but especially if you are a woman and especially if your face doesn’t fit, and mine certainly didn’t.

“You definitely get the sense that you’re not welcome there and you can’t fit in with the general crowd. I found that really hard.”

Goya talks about her journey in the latest instalment of My Icon, which premieres on Wednesday at 7am on Sky Sports Mix and is available On Demand. The episode is repeated on Wednesday at 1pm, 6pm and 10pm.

Coinciding with Black History Month, Sky Sports’ #MyIcon campaign brings you 31 exclusive interviews with top BAME sports personalities across the month of October. For more information click here.