Sotogrande: German professional golfer and Europe’s youngest golfer to win a professional golf tour event, Chiara Noja, is the latest international ambassador to join Golf Saudi in 2022, following on from icons of the women’s game including Anna Nordqvist, Anne Van Dam and Carlota Ciganda.
One of the in-form players of the past twelve months, Noja will not only feature in Golf Saudi owned events going forward but more importantly will aid the organistion in its ongoing journey to bring the great game of golf to new audiences, particularly young girls and women, both globally and within the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
News of Chiara’s ambassadorship was announced during this week’s Aramco Team Series event in Sotogrande, which is taking place from August 18-20, inclusively. This week’s field is packed full of global stars, with Chiara set to go up against household names including Nelly and Jessica Korda, Anna Nordqvist, Carlota Ciganda and last year’s winner Alison Lee.
Part of Chiara’s new role with Golf Saudi will see her participate in on-course lessons and clinics with female amateurs of the game, in order to not only inspire those participating but more importantly encourage them to continue to play the sport. Chiara will draw upon her own experiences of rising through the amateur ranks and what it takes to become a professional as well as talking about how golf can reach new audiences and ensure its future development.
“I have always enjoyed fantastic support from the whole team at Golf Saudi, not only via invites to their fantastic events but also in terms of providing advice too. By turning professional, I have been able to concurrently continue my academic career whilst still developing and improving as a golfer. I was lucky enough to make my debut on the Ladies European Tour at the end of 2020 and the subsequent twelve months gave me the confidence to turn professional in 2021,” commented Chiara Noja, who became a scratch golfer at the age of 11, before topping the European Rankings at both an Under-12 and Under-14 level, maintaining her upward trajectory ever since.
She added, “Golf Saudi is doing amazing things for the game whether it’s through their Mass Participation programs to drive youth engagement and their efforts to draw more people to our sport, particularly young girls and women. I am delighted to be confirmed as the latest Golf Saudi ambassador and to not only work alongside so many female superstars from women’s golf but to also support such an ambitious organisation as Golf Saudi. Having come to prominence at a similar time to Golf Saudi, I’d like to think that we’ll be able to share insights mutually and both do our bit in terms of growing the game both in Saudi Arabia and globally.”
It is fair to say that she has enjoyed a rather stellar first year as a debut professional. Making the step up at just 15 years old in October 2021, she paid back her early sponsor invites in full by not missing a single cut at the Dubai Moonlight Classic, Aramco Saudi Ladies International, and the Aramco Team Series – Jeddah. Just two months ago in June 2022, Chiara secured her maiden professional victory at the Amundi Czech Ladies Challenge, nine strokes ahead of Sára Kousková, and rose to the top of the LETAS Order of Merit.
Majed Al-Sorour, the CEO and Deputy Chairman of both Golf Saudi and the Saudi Golf Federation, commenting on her appointment said: “Chiara immediately impressed me when I saw her play last year in Saudi Arabia. She put in two impressive back-to-back performances at both of our tournaments. To make not only the cut in the Aramco Saudi Ladies International presented by PIF and finish T40 but to do so with a shoulder injury, before following this up with a T26 in the Aramco Team Series belies her talent and bodes very well for both our new partnership but also for the future of women’s golf on the Ladies European Tour. Having also both lived and played in the Middle East, she has the potential to become a role model for all young girls here in the region and help us with our long-term aims at Golf Saudi of developing the women’s game in the Kingdom.”