My name is Rutger Pranger and I am so honoured to be asked to join team Europe for The Cairns Cup 2024.

I live with my wife Joke in the Netherlands in Enschede, a town near the German border. We are happy and have a 33-year-old son and 31-year-old twin daughters. I’m also a proud “opa”; Dutch for grandad.

I worked in the construction industry. first as a carpenter and from the age of 36 as an independent building constructor. In 2010 I fell of a scaffold and injured my lower leg severely. In hospital they operated the leg, and the surgeon expected the leg to be healed in about ten weeks. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen. In the following five years I went 14 times more for surgery.

At the end of 2014 I decided, in consultation with the surgeons of course, that my right lower leg had to be amputated. After that a severe revalidation program followed in which I learned to walk again.

Golf. Just a hobby or more than that?

During the years of surgery my children gave me a golf lesson as a gift, for the time my leg would have been cured. After amputation and revalidation, I had my first golf lesson at a driving range in 2015. It didn’t take long before I was addicted to the game of golf.

My golf pro told me about one of his students who participated in the Dutch Championship for disabled people. I also subscribed and that’s how I started playing golf matches. The competitive element in matches appeals to me very much and nowadays I play matches in my home country and abroad.

Being chosen to play in the Cairns Cup is really a dream come true. I never could have thought that I, after my accident at 60 years of age I would receive an invitation for such a fantastic and prestigious event.

I hope to be inspiration and example for other people. Tineke Loogman thank you so much for the invitation. I will do everything in my power to be a good team player and bring the Cairns Cup 2024 to Europe.

Looking forward to meeting you at Cherry Creek, Shelby Township in Detroit.