UA's Cepelak makes headlines overseas

By Craig Degel

and Patrick Klein

Arizona Daily Wildcat

Like it or not, UA junior golfer Brenna Cepelak is the talk of the of the British press.

After weeks of speculation that Cepelak and golfer Nick Faldo were romantically linked, the Sun, a London newspaper, reported that upon hearing the announcement of Faldo's separation from his second wife Gill, "Faldo's young mistress (Cepelak) jumped for joy and said, 'He's my dream lover.'"

Cepelak did not return repeated calls made to her home yesterday. Head golf coach Rick LaRose and assistant Tom Brill were also unavailable for comment.

University of Arizona sports information director Tom Duddleston said he was told Cepelak might make a statement but that he had heard nothing definite on the matter.

Yesterday, the Telegraph, another London paper, reported that Faldo's relationship with Cepelak was similar to the relationship the golfer had with Gill, then the secretary to Faldo's manager, that led to the end of his first marriage in 1984.

The split was announced Monday by Faldo's agent, John Simpson.

"With regret, Gill and Nick . announced they have split after nearly 10 years of marriage," the statement said. "Gill and Nick request privacy to themselves, their family and friends. There will be no further statement."

The Faldos have three children: Natalie, 9, Matthew, 6, and Georgia, 2.

Both Kirsty Scott of the Scotland Herald and William Lowther, a British reporter based in Washington, D.C., contacted the Arizona Daily Wildcat for information about Cepelak.

The Sun also said Faldo, 38, wants a to make a clean break and start a new life in the United States with Cepelak, 20.

Speculation about the stability of Faldo's marriage first surfaced before last month's Ryder Cup competition when the Sun reported that Faldo had asked his advisers to work out the cost of a divorce settlement.

The Sun reported Faldo offered his wife an $11.8 million divorce settlement, which she accepted. The settlement gave her a $790,000 pension for her work as director of Nick Faldo International, the couple's $4.7 million mansion near the Wentworth golf club, and a payment of $6.3 million. She will also get custody of the children.

Faldo will keep the couple's Florida home, their Swiss chalet, freedom to move to the United States, all future income from his golf winnings and his four companies.

It was reported by USA TODAY earlier this month that the two had met while Faldo, a three-time winner of the British Open and two-time Masters champion, was in Tucson participating in the Northern Telecom Open last January.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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