The 23-year-old disabled British golfer will be one of the major stars at the Emil open 2017. Ashley Harris, 4th in British open, 3rd UK Golf Trust Open thinks Emil Open is a great place to compete against athletes from other countries. Why did he choose this sport and what is his strongest sports memory? He answered a couple of questions for us. Check it out.
Golf becomes more and more popular among public. Does it affect also you and do you see the difference?
Golf becoming more popular is a positive for everyone involved in the industry. More members, more competitions, more talented athletes coming through. More people finding healthier lifestyles and more friendships and happiness from sport.
Why did you choose this sport?
My grandad was my biggest inspiration and continues to be late into his life. He played and I followed.
I enjoy the relaxed, pedestrian pace of the sport. But I also enjoy the fact that it’s all down to you. You can't blame a teammate or someone else. You make a mistake or won a game. It’s all you. I also enjoy being able to practise on my own.
What do you think is the strongest sport memory you have so far?
For me personally, being part of 2 victorious England teams against Wales and Scotland and also coming 15th in European Individuals last year was phenomenal.
My best sporting memory was witnessing first hand Europe's Win over USA in Celtic Manor in 2010 Ryder Cup and then working at the Olympics and Paralympics in London and holding Team GBs Cycling Gold medal.
What do you think of the sport events like Emil Open?
The Emil Open is and will always be a great platform for disabled young people to either take the sport up or to take it to the next level and compete against athletes from other countries. I wish that more people could hear about and become part of the future events.
Why is sport so important in our lives and why especially for the disabled people?
Sport has given me everything in life. Friends, respect and most of all a drive / passion for something that gets me up in the morning. For disabled people sport can be a gateway to better lifestyles, more friends, and better mental health. Being disabled can become very lonely and small world. With sport it can make the world your oyster.
Who do you think is the biggest sport personality of all times? Who is your personal sports icon?
Me personally, I have 3 sporting icons that I look up to. Sir Seve Redgrave, Tammi Grey Thompson and Steve Ballesteros. All of them had a drive to succeed that even in their darkest moments drove them through it and to success. They also changed the landscape of their sport from which allowed more people to take the sport up and become successful athletes in future generations.
Do you have any advice for the people who are not self-confident to start some sport?
Sport is not something you have to please someone else for. Sport is about enjoying yourself and learning new skills that can help you. Don't make someone else stop you. Don't let someone else make your mind up. This is your time and it’s your time to shine. Just go for it! You have nothing lose! And a whole lot more to gain!
Photo: Ashley Harris