Kelsey Bennett is off and running as a professional golfer after securing medalist honours at the WPGA Tour of Australasia Qualifying School at Coolangatta-Tweed Heads Golf Club on Tuesday.
The 22-year-old from Mollymook on the New South Wales South Coast was one of Australia’s top amateurs before taking the professional plunge ahead of the Final Stage of Ladies European Tour Qualifying last month.
She missed out on earning a card in Spain but now Bennett has locked away a full playing schedule in Australia by shooting rounds of 70 and 69.
This weekend’s Melbourne International at Latrobe Golf Club will now serve as the kickstarter of her journey in the paid to play ranks.
“This is just something that I was looking forward to and super happy that I can start in Australia,” Bennett said.
“I’m super keen. Off to Latrobe and it will all start. I’ve entered into a few of the events and now I’m in the Vic Open which is even better.
“That was the one thing that I was really focusing on this week, making sure that I got into that top eight so I could guarantee myself starts.”
During her stellar amateur career Bennett represented Australia at the World Amateur Team Championship in Paris last year and the Women’s Amateur Asia-Pacific – where she came runner-up in Abu Dhabi in 2021 – on two occasions.
Her travels in 2022 also included a quarter-final appearance at The Women’s Amateur Championship in the United Kingdom and a Round of 16 showing at the US Women’s Amateur Championship.
On home soil Bennett represented New South Wales in open age and junior Interstate competition, she chalked up three victories in World Amateur Golf Ranking events and came third at the 2022 Australian Amateur.
Last WPGA Tour of Australasia season she teed it up in five events as an amateur and finished inside the top-16 in each of those tournaments.
“I didn’t miss any of the cuts in the Australian events last year so that gave me a really big confidence booster,” she said.
“I was super stoked to do that and really looking forward to this year.”