The problem with history is that it gets old in a hurry. All too easy, memories are buried beneath turned pages of the calendar, requiring deft fingers to clear away the cobwebs and reveal past accomplishments. Fortunately, time provides convenient windows into yesterday.
Among the milestones that allow us to remember is the end of a decade. Breaking time into ten-year clusters is a convenient way to sort out accomplishments. And sifting through the years 2010 through 2019 reveals how many great performances populated the decade that now trundles to a close.
Perhaps we should call it The Mike Whan Decade – 2010 was the first year he was LPGA Commissioner – but he’d be the first to say the focus should always be on the players. And, oh my, did the players ever give golf fans something to remember over the last decade.
That’s why we are giving you our 16 nominees for LPGA Player of the Decade. Consider their accomplishments and cast your vote. Look at their names and remember the great deeds they accomplished. It’s our way to remind you of the great golf over the last 10 years and to ask for your evaluation of it.
There was Inbee Park winning the first three majors of 2013 and showing up at the AIG Women’s British Open – on The Old Course at St. Andrews of all places – with a chance to become the first professional, male or female, to complete the calendar-year Grand Slam. All she did was win 18 times, including six majors, in the decade.
Stacy Lewis was Rolex Player of the Year in 2012 and 2014, becoming the first American to capture the honor since Beth Daniel in 1994. She won a dozen times in the decade, including two majors, one of which was at St. Andrews, and reached No.1 in the Rolex Rankings.
Youth was one of the storylines over the last 10 years.
Yani Tseng won 13 times in the first three years of the decade, including five majors, all by the age of 23. At the same age, Annika Sorenstam, who won 72 LPGA events and 10 majors, had yet to win a professional tournament.
Lydia Ko, who won 15 times in the decade with two major championships, was 15-years-old when she grabbed her first LPGA victory at the 2012 Canadian Pacific Women’s Open.
Lexi Thompson, an 11-time winner who at the age of only 24 has remarkably won at least once for seven consecutive years, was 16 when she got her first LPGA win at the 2011 Navistar Classic.
Brooke Henderson, whose nine wins at the age of 22 are more than any Canadian on the LPGA or PGA Tour, was 17 when she first won at the 2015 Cambia Portland Classic.
When it comes to longevity, Cristie Kerr’s career has spanned two decades but she has seven wins, a major and a bunch of Solheim Cup appearances over the last 10 years.
Suzann Pettersen put an emphatic stamp on her career by making the putt that won the 2019 Solheim Cup at Gleneagles and then announced her retirement.
These athletes and more are on the bracket for the LPGA Player of the Decade. Check them out and vote.
This is your opportunity to make certain that these remarkable performers and their deeds get their due. It’s a way to make certain that history never gets old.Voting for the LPGA Player of the Decade begins Dec. 2, 2019. Cast your vote on LPGA.com or on the LPGA's social channels.