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A transgender golf instructor was forced to leave The Open early after reportedly suffering "vile abuse" while handing out lessons.
Alison Perkins had been giving lessons to fans at Royal St George's when she claims she was targeted by spectators who started hurling abuse at her.
It's understood she was shaken up by the incident and decided to leave the course before returning the following day.
But Perkins admits she was still affected by the alleged trans-phobic abuse so she decided to pack up and leave altogether.
"Yes, it has hurt and caused much distress," Perkins told the Telegraph
A beautiful sunrise on the coast. Was 5am, and taking some time to think about life, while skimming stones, which is good for golf by the way. I will hopefully come back stronger one day. Its a tough journey I am on, trying to take the positives from the week not the negatives. pic.twitter.com/5A1VV9wqcF- Alison Perkins (@alisonpgapro) July 17, 2021
"It only takes a few in thousands to do harm and it can take me a while to recover from this sort of thing.
"However, I like to draw on the good and not the bad. I will fight and be back at some point.
"For now, I just hope folk enjoy the Open. I am about portraying the positive in my life.
"What goes around comes around. I have many battles in life. Some I choose to fight, others are not worth it. The end goal is more important to me.
"These people just don't understand, know the facts or realise how much they can affect someone's life.
"I did think about quitting golf yesterday but, hey, it's what I love, so don't let them win."
Upon hearing the story, the PGA leapt to Perkins' defence and issued a statement showing their support for her.
"This is a very distressing incident and Alison has our full support at this difficult time," the statement read.
Day 4 and 1st rnd of the championship.- Alison Perkins (@alisonpgapro) July 15, 2021
I was the first person on the tee, 545am, to watch R Bland hit the opening shot of this year's Open.
Compared to 2 years ago at Portrush the stand was not full and not the same atmosphere at all :((. pic.twitter.com/miedYW7XL3
"Alison has been an integral member of the Swingzone team delivering free golf lessons to the general public at The Open and has contributed a huge amount to its success this year as well as in previous years.
"She is a highly skilled and dedicated coach and is respected and admired by her colleagues and golfers alike.
"The well-being of our members is our primary focus and we will continue to support Alison.
"We enjoy a diverse membership of more than 8,000 PGA Professionals, who should all be free to work without fear of discrimination or prejudice."
It's understood the sport's governing body is working closely with local authorities to find the people responsible for the abuse.
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