IT’S a whopping 30 years now since Kathryn Imrie first stepped out on the LPGA Tour. “Thanks for reminding me,” she chuckled of this passage of time that seems to have birled by quicker than Liz Truss’s premiership.

Here in 2023, the trailblazing Dundonian, who would become the first Scot to win on the LPGA circuit in 1995, is hoping to steer a new generation along a path to golfing glory.

Based in the San Francisco area for the past 20 years, Imrie came back to her Scottish roots last summer. There was a poignancy to her return but also the prospect of new possibilities as a performance coach with Scottish Golf. “Sadly, my dad died last summer,” said the 55-year-old of that family bereavement. “I’d been trying to get back to spend more time with him but he left us a bit earlier than we thought. It was a very hard loss. The opportunity to work with Scottish Golf was another factor in my decision. It was too good an offer to turn down.”

A prolific champion in her amateur days before plunging into the pro game, Imrie is trying to instil a winning mentality into the current crop. “If you’re going to go anywhere in golf, you have to learn how to win,” said the former Solheim Cup player and valued vice-captain. “I don’t blame young people for turning pro and wanting to get out there. It’s exciting and there is opportunity. But you need to reach certain benchmarks before you can dive into that. It’s one thing hitting the ball well but are you winning and winning consistently? Golf is so hard and the more I teach it, the more I realise that.”

In this flummoxing, fickle game of complex, varied demands, there is no one-size-fits-all model for success. You need a bit of this, plenty of that and a heck of a lot of the other. If you could bottle the abundant qualities of, say, Catriona Matthew and spoon feed it to up-and-coming players like a daily dose of cod liver oil, you’d have an overflowing conveyor belt of top-level talent.

“Catriona had those magic ingredients that you need,” said Imrie of her decorated compatriot and great friend. “I’ll admit that my patience with the game wasn’t as good as it could’ve been when I was playing and I’ll tell that to the young ones now. How you mentally deal with golf, and the things it throws at you, is the big thing.

"Catriona was probably the best at keeping her emotions intact. I know she could’ve been seething under the skin but she didn’t show it. She was the perfect model. To compete you need to have the whole package. You have to be good in the gym, you have to clued up on nutrition, you have to prepare well. If you’re going to be good at any level you have to excel in all these areas. Then you need that X- Factor of desire. How much do you want it?”

In Gemma Dryburgh, who won on the LPGA Tour at the tail end of 2022, Scotland has a new standard bearer on the global stage. As for amateur stand-out Hannah Darling? Well, Imrie is seeing a familiar trait in the exceptional youngster from Edinburgh. “She’s phenomenal and has that wonderful balanced, self-belief that can take her on a path to great things,” she said of the US college student who has been a multiple winner through the age groups “Again, look at Catriona. She was confident without being cocky. That’s the fine line.”

A canny footballer back in ye day – she was a forward for the Dundee Strikers women’s team – Imrie eventually made her name in the dimpled ba’ game, winning her one and only title on the LPGA Tour in 1995 and representing Europe in the Solheim Cup a year later.

“I would’ve loved another win,” reflected Imrie, who still travels back to California for teaching work at the Sharon Heights Country Club in the heart of Silicon Valley. “If a few more putts had dropped then I might have had another but every pro will say that. I feel fortunate that I can share my wisdom and pass on what I’ve learned to hopefully make those coming through better than I was.”