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Argentina rugby great Hernández appointed new R&A ambassador

The R&A
14 Nov 23
3 mins

Argentine rugby legend Juan Martín Hernández is to become a new Development Ambassador for The R&A to help drive golf participation in Latin America.

The 41-year-old, who was recently inducted into the World Rugby Hall of Fame, will leverage his iconic status and profile to showcase golf as an inclusive sport that offers significant health benefits for people of all ages and abilities. Hernández will collaborate with The R&A to support an impactful, health-focused campaign in Latin America, building on the success of last year’s pilot ‘Golf is Good’ programme in Wales that featured world-renowned footballer Gareth Bale and inspired more people to take up the sport and play more regularly.

Inspire more people

“I am a passionate advocate of golf and want to support its growth by promoting the many health and wellbeing benefits that it can provide,” said Hernández. “By highlighting that golf is truly a sport for all, I hope to inspire more people in Latin America to pick up a club for the first time or play more regularly so that they can experience the joy of golf with family and friends. “The R&A is doing important work to boost the number of people playing golf worldwide and I hope that I can make a real impact by replicating the success that we have seen with golf and health campaigns in other countries.”  Hernández, who amassed 74 caps for the Pumas during his illustrious career and helped lead Argentina to the 2007 Rugby World Cup semi-finals, joins other renowned R&A ambassadors.
Juan Martín Hernández was capped 74 for his country including helping the Pumas to the 2007 Rugby World Cup semi-finals and eventually the bronze medal in France.

Boost participation

They include Bale, Kathryn Newton, Michelle Wie West and Niall Horan who are helping The R&A introduce golf to wider, more diverse audiences and enhance its appeal by positively influencing its image and perception worldwide. Phil Anderton, Chief Development Officer at The R&A, said, “Juan Martín Hernández is a rugby legend in Argentina and has a strong following in Latin America. He loves playing golf and is enthusiastic about our drive to boost participation and build upon the momentum we have seen in recent years. “We know from our research that superstar athletes and celebrity figures are having a positive impact on the motivation of people to try golf for the first time or play it more often. Our Development Ambassadors are helping us to reach new audiences and positively influence the sport’s image with millions of followers and they are doing it because of their love for golf. They do not charge us anything for it. “Over time, we hope this work helps to change the perceptions of golf and highlight that the sport is modern, contemporary and open to everyone.”


Consumer research from The R&A’s pilot has highlighted the impact of celebrity figures to encourage people into the sport. In total, 71% of respondents felt ‘ would be most appealing if the initiative was advertised by celebrities as well as regular people.’ The R&A appointed Modest! Golf, founded by Horan, to work on, a pilot initiative to encourage people to learn to play golf at a diverse range of golf facilities across Scotland.