Hello Eija-when did you first take an interest in golf?
We lived in Japan and my husband started to play golf there in 1998 so I thought it was a good idea to start a hobby that we could do together. (At my first golf lessons the teacher could speak only Japanese and I could not follow his instructions!). However, we moved to Singapore and I found an Australian pro who started me on the road to becoming a golfer.
Why did you chose to become a member at Atalaya Golf?
That was easy, my husband visited all the golf courses in this area and he thought that Atalaya was the perfect course for us.
You have been here for 13 years now, what are the main changes you have seen at the club?
Both of the courses have always been enjoyable to play. During my time here I have noticed that the management team have succeeded in raising the quality of both courses. When the previous greenkeeper retired, we lost some of our lovely flowerbeds, but we now have so many trees in full bloom at the club.
In addition, the condition of the fairways has improved greatly and we can see that particularly when we have many consecutive rainy days, as I can remember the time when we literally walked ankle deep in the mud. The New course is also more enjoyable to play and we should encourage our members to play there more often.
What I do miss are those great social events what we used to have: Octoberfest, Spanish day, Scandinavian day, St Patrick’s day, Carnivals, autumn barbecue etc. Hopefully we can put together a group of active members who are interested in organising social events for us.
The first Finnish Captain at the club. Atalaya Golf really is international.
This was one of the main reasons my husband chose Atalaya. Our common language is English and the native English speakers understand our different accents. We all play ladies, men’s and mixed competitions together. When I joined Atalaya most of the ladies were from UK and Germany, with a few players from Scandinavia and Finland. Now I feel that Atalaya is a “mini–European Union”. We have also been lucky to be able to attract more younger active Finnish players and I am very proud to be the first Finnish Lady Captain.
What are your goals this year as Lady Captain?
A Lady Captain works closely with her male counterpart and together we try to serve the members the best we can. I hope that whatever we are doing it is as transparent as possible and we will give all the information that we have to the members.
Personally, I prefer qualifying competitions but I will try to find a good balance between qualifying and non-qualifying competitions. I will try to entourage as many ladies as possible to organise different kind of events for the ladies and also participate in the events. I will be spending a lot of time at the golf club and I hope that if anyone has something on their mind, they do not hesitate to contact me.
Finally Eija, are you excited about the Solheim Cup?
To be able to watch the Solheim Cup in our neighbourhood here in Spain this autumn is something special. Golf is still male dominated, but little by little we ladies are getting equal with the men and the Solheim Cup is wonderful proof that. I am so excited about the event that I applied to be a volunteer, and was accepted to be a parking attendant. I’ m looking forward to guiding the drivers to their proper places!