LPGA enjoying break after successful first major of 2014
The LPGA Tour takes a week break this week as the sports world turns its eyes to Augusta, Ga., for The Masters, but there is still considerable buzz surrounding the world’s best female golfers.
Nineteen-year-old Lexi Thompson earned her first major championship title – and fourth career LPGA win – on Sunday with the low round of the day, a 68, to finish three strokes ahead of Michelle Wie at the Kraft Nabisco Championship. The storied major championship was the first of the 2014 season for professional golf, and there’s no doubt Thompson will remember her dip in Poppie’s Pond forever.
The LPGA returns to action the week of April 14 for the LPGA LOTTE Championship Presented by J Golf. The tournament once again will be held at the dreamy Ko Olina Golf Club in Kapolei, Oahu, Hawaii, and Suzann Pettersen hopefully will be back to defend her title.
Pettersen withdrew from the past two tournaments due to a nagging back injury, and she plans to be rested and ready to play when the event kicks off on April 17. Ai Miyazato, the 2012 LOTTE champion, will be another player in the field to watch on the 6,383-yard course.
With a purse of $1.7 million and a plethora of birdies ready for the taking – Petterson won with a 19-under-par total last year – it should be good watching for all.
The following week, the Tour heads to San Francisco for the first time since 2010 for one of its new domestic tournaments, the $1.8 million Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic. The event is co-sanctioned by the Taiwan LPGA, making it the first co-sanctioned LPGA event ever held on U.S. soil.
Swinging Skirts is a Taiwanese group whose goal is to grow the game of women’s golf and the golf industry in Taiwan. The 72-hole event’s field will consist of 120 LPGA players, as well as a group of players from Taiwan and two Monday qualifiers.
Lake Merced Golf Club, one of the first golf clubs to have no gender restrictions to its membership, is the Tour’s host for the highly anticipated event, one players are eager to attend. California stars such as Paula Creamer, Natalie Gulbis, Juli Inkster and Michelle Wie, as well as most of the other top 10 players in the world, have already verbally committed to the tournament.
A growing tournament in a tropical island and an inaugural event in one of the country’s biggest and grandest cities – that’s not a bad for the LPGA to close the month of April.
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