REUNION, Fla. – Each year, the AJGA’s Annika Invitational introduces the junior golf world to the next top international player. Three of the five winners in the event’s history have hailed from China, Argentina and France.
Spots are always reserved in the Annika for international invitees. This year, that included Annika Europe winner Linnea Strom, a long-hitting, soft-spoken Swede who began her week at Reunion Resort beside Annika Sorenstam at the tournament-opening press conference. It was not only her first time addressing media in such a formal setting, but her first time doing it in English.
“They had given me the questions before, so I was prepared,” Strom said with a big smile mid-week.
Strom relished the opportunity to do the press conference alongside fellow Swede Annika, a “really big” role model for the 16-year-old. She relished the opportunity to play in her tournament even more. Strom was that player who drew a trail of interest from the army of college coaches that annually attend the tournament.
Strom has expressed interest in attending college in the U.S., and her play at Reunion offered coaches many reasons to be excited. Strom played alongside Italian Virginia Elena Carta and Denmark’s Emily Pedersen in Round 2. It amounted to a show of powerful and aggressive golf. With three consecutive rounds of 1-under 71, Strom finished the week T-5.
Before the Annika, Strom had only played one tournament in the U.S. – the Junior Orange Bowl, where she finished T-4. Her family typically spends part of the winter in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.
Strom could be the next great up-and-comer in junior golf.