The last time Spaniard Azahara Munoz teed it up on the LPGA Tour was the 2021 Pelican Women’s Championship in Belleair, Fla. but she stepped away for a very good reason. The 34-year-old gave birth to son Lucas on February 28, 2022 via emergency C-section and has been spending time at home caring for her first child, a welcome reprieve from life on the LPGA Tour. Munoz makes her return to competitive golf this week at the Dana Open presented by Marathon and admits that she was feeling some nerves when she showed up at Highland Meadows Golf Club a couple of days ago.
“I was a bit nervous coming to the course on Monday actually,” said Munoz. “Feels like it's been forever. I've enjoyed being home so much. It's not that I was dying to be here, but now that I'm here it's really nice to see everyone. Everybody always says how you just don't know how much you love them until you have them, but he's incredible. He's such a good little boy. My parents were over here for three months with me so it was nice to be home. We are always at such a fast pace traveling so it's been really nice to have the little break and enjoy the baby.”
Many new #LPGAMoms are a little hesitant to drop their little ones off at the Smucker’s LPGA Child Development Center for the first time, but Munoz said Lucas did great on Tuesday and that’s allowed his mom to relax and enjoy her time at the golf course. This is Munoz’s 10th start at the Dana Open and she has three top-10s in Toledo, the most recent of which was a tie for ninth that came in 2016. But she didn’t come into this week with many expectations and didn’t really want to have a strict plan for her comeback, a very intentional choice for the new mom, especially considering her birth experience. As she looks ahead to her first start since last November and first as a mom, Munoz is as competitive as ever and is still looking for herself to perform, even with the new challenge of balancing motherhood and pro golf.
“I never thought of anything. I just wanted to take it as it comes because everybody has such a different story. I didn't think about my game being different, but neither did I when I was pregnant. I feel like sometimes you hear a story and then you almost make it become that way,” said Munoz. “I was telling yesterday someone from Spain. I was like, ‘I have no excuses.’ Obviously, the competition and getting the baby ready, all of that is so different, and maybe not sleeping as great, but other than that, my body feels good. I just need to play. Just get things going.”