Bone-breaking cart crashes & black widow spider bites: Swedish golfer Daniela Holmqvist opens up on horrific injury agony
Golf may not seem the most demanding of sports at first glance but there’s no denying Holmqvist is made of pretty strong stuff.
The 32-year-old from Sweden has suffered with constant pain since a bad accident in 2018 left her needing several injections in her back in order to play.
Holmqvist was in China competing on the tour when a golf cart she was riding in flipped backwards and lost control, sending the vehicle smashing into the side of a building.
As Holmqvist explained in a recent interview with Kvallsposten: “We went in the golf cart between two holes and there were far too many people in the car.
"It became heavy and when the driver gassed extra to get over a bridge it flipped backwards. We were close to a sharp turn and it ended with us driving straight into a wall.”
Sitting in the passenger seat, Holmqvist bore the brunt of the collision and despite finishing the round, she was suffering from shock and the next day began to experience severe pain.
That signified the start of 18 months of problems, resulting in Holmqvist having to take constant medication and pain-killing injections.
“I have been injected in the back seven times and there has been a lot of tablets and rehabilitation training,” she says. “It has also meant lost income.”
It’s that loss of income that despite her bravery has led her to look into legal proceedings, although the suspension of the LPGA due to the global pandemic means her release on medical grounds from the tour can be extended.
Holmqvist already had a fearsome reputation after an incident back in 2013 when she was bitten on the ankle by a black widow spider while playing in the Australian open.
Seemingly unfazed by the seriousness of the situation, she simply swatted the spider away, grabbed a tee in order to pierce her skin and removed the venom. She then continued to play and finished with a round of just 74. This led to her earning the nickname ‘Spider Woman’.
She’s now focused on getting herself prepared physically and otherwise for a return to golf once the lockdown eases and competitive sport resumes, saying: “It is most difficult mentally not to have the opportunity to train and play as much as I know is required to assert yourself at this level.”