Like most normal folk, I've never been a big fan of plummeting from great heights.

The slightest hint of mild turbulence during a flight, for instance, will have me shrieking like a pantomime dame who's just been pinched on the bottom by Dick Whittington.

Watching other people plunge from the distant safety of your own couch, though? Well, that's an entirely different matter, on a fascinating par with gazing at a scuttling legion of migrating lemmings careering over the edge of a cliff during a wildlife documentary.

Loading article content

Whether it's the ski jump or the mind-boggling magnificence of the luge, the Winter Olympics can be an absorbing exercise in gobsmacked gawping as spandex-clad daredevils hurtle from one end of a skitey slope to the other while trying to avoid the bountiful pitfalls that come with such perilous descents. It's a bit like viewing a snow-covered version of Jack and Jill's ill-fated quest for a pail of water, what with all the tumbling and potentially calamitous consequences.

In the far less hazardous world of golf, meanwhile, there are those who are trying to work their way up from the bottom of the slippery brae to the top. On Sunday in Australia, there was the familiar name of a Woods notching a first win of 2014. Not the Tiger, of course, but the Tigress. Cheyenne Woods' breakthrough victory in the Ladies' Australian Masters at the weekend was a significant statement of intent and a robust sign that the 23-year-old can make a name for herself.

It certainly can't be easy following in the golfing footsteps of Uncle Tiger. The surname stands out like Ayers Rock in a pebble collection and the great burden of expectation will be akin to having that aforementioned chunk of sandstone lumped on to her shoulders.

Sunday's victory demonstrated a sense of assurance and gave observers an indication that she is far more than simply Tiger Woods' niece. "It's nice now to say to people that I can play, and I'm not just a name," she said through a beaming smile that bears a striking resemblance to her uncle. "I've been a pro for two years and, for the majority of it, people just think of me as Tiger Woods' niece. So, now I have a game of my own, and I have a title now, a win."

What happens next is anyone's guess. There will be an inevitable clamour, no doubt, and a rush to anoint her as the next superstar of the women's game. The idea of Woods going on to dominate in the way her uncle Tiger did in the men's arena is the stuff of Hollywood's dream department. In these fast moving times, when the thirst for instant success and overnight heroes and heroines remains unquenchable, excited predictions and ponderings over the future possibilities will pour forth.

Yet they remain somewhat premature. It's not Woods' fault, of course. She is just a young woman trying to make her way in a devilishly difficult game, after all. Yes, her name has afforded her a number of opportunities that other rookies would not have enjoyed but, like all the hopefuls chipping away at the coalface, she is learning the hard way and the various knocks along the road hurt just the same, whether your uncle is Tiger Woods or Tam Woodcock.

Since she turned professional in 2012, after a successful college career, Woods has failed in two attempts at the LPGA Tour's qualifying school.

Last year, during her first season on the Ladies European Tour in which she eventually finished 78th on the order of merit, she led the Spanish Open with an opening 64 but slumped to a 78 on day two.

Such disappointments are all part and parcel of the professional game and that will have made her hard-earned victory down under all the more satisfying. The Ladies' European Tour may not have the strength in depth of the LPGA circuit but Woods still had to overcome a field of impressive quality to conquer in Australia. The likes of Caroline Hedwall, star of Europe's Solheim Cup win last summer, Jessica Korda, Karrie Webb, Charley Hull and the former world No.1, Tseng Yani were all left trailing in Woods' wake.

Leading after 54 holes, Woods seemed to revel in the pressure and made two decisive birdies over the last four holes on the final afternoon to stave off her nearest rivals. That competitive family gene was clearly in evidence.

Expectation levels will have been cranked up a few more notches and, while it is unrealistic to expect her to stamp her authority all over the game as her uncle has done, she could accumulate some of his mass appeal. For those in power, who are looking to bolster women's golf in markets throughout the globe, that really would be a gift from the golfing gods.

It's only one win in a fledgling professional career but her maiden success at the weekend has demonstrated that there is much more to Cheyenne Woods than her surname.