Five or less players will be in contention for the inaugural Rolex ANNIKA Major Award when the LPGA major season wraps up at this season's last major, the Evian Championship, but the race is already beginning to thin, the frontrunners leaving the wannabe hopefuls behind.
The award given out to the season’s top performer in the five major championships requires a win in one of the five events, so only Lexi Thompson and Michelle Wie are up for the award at this point via their wins at the Kraft Nabisco Championship and U.S. Women’s Open, respectively.
Wie’s had as close to ideal of a major season as one could get without two wins with a runner-up at the Kraft Nabisco Championship and a two-shot win at the U.S. Women’s Open. As a result, Wie – perhaps the comeback player of the year on tour this season – leads Thompson by 16 points.
Thompson actually sat in second at the U.S. Women’s Open – just three shots shy of Wie – and looked like she might start the year off with back-to-back wins but faltered to a tie for 7th after weekend rounds of 74-71.
Just like always, Rolex Rankings No. 1 Stacy Lewis isn’t out of it either. She needs a win to carve her name into consideration, she’s only 42 points back of Wie and 26 of Thompson after a third and a second-place finish to start her major season. A win – worth 60 points – would guarantee Lewis at least a share of the top spot of the points as long as Wie doesn’t take second. Lewis and Thompson are the only ones within 60 points of Wie, which comes as little surprise considering the trio are the top 3 in the point standings for the Rolex Player of the Year.
Stephanie Meadows, who wasn’t in the field at the Kraft to open the year, vaulted into fourth in the standings via a third-place finish at the U.S. Women’s Opening. However, the recently turned pro is in the Final Qualifying Tournament for the Women’s British Open on Monday and will have to play her way into the field.
Amy Yang (16), Cristie Kerr (14), Se Ri Pak (14), So Yeon Ryu (12), Meena Lee (12), and Shanshan Feng (10) are the only other players with double-digit points.