26 Oct 2022 | Professional golf |
Top women commit to ISPS HANDA Australian Open
by Australian Golf Media
The historic dual-gender ISPS HANDA Australian Open in Melbourne this summer is set to feature a sensational women’s field, after a bunch of top-flight players committed to the event this week. With world No. 5 Minjee Lee and her Perth compatriot Hannah Green already entered for the 1-4 December Open at Victoria Golf Club and Kingston Heath in Melbourne, another five world class female players have agreed to play. Today’s additions to the field include World Golf Hall of Fame member Dame Laura Davies from England, a former world No. 1 player and dual major champion in South Korea’s So Yeon Ryu, Chinese star and world No.16 Xiyu Lin, American world No. 33 Marina Alex and 10-year LPGA Tour veteran Jenny Shin. Previously five-time Open winner Karrie Webb and growing Australian star Stephanie Kyriacou have announced that they will play for the Patricia Bridges Bowl in Melbourne, while the 25-year-old Lee will be the marquee attraction as the reigning US Women’s Open champion and current world top-five player. The 2022 Women’s British Open victor Ashleigh Buhai of South Africa also is in the field this December. Women will play alongside men in the historic dual-gender Open in 2022, the first national Open in golf to feature both sexes playing on the same venue at the same time, for separate trophies. The men’s Open and the women’s Open will have equal prizemoney pools of $1.7 million as the Open returns to Melbourne for the first time in several years, also featuring the Australian All Abilities Championship for golfers with a disability. The men’s field includes all the top-ranked Australians including Cameron Smith, Marc Leishman, Adam Scott, Cam Davis, Lucas Herbert, Min Woo Lee and Matt Jones as the Open roars back to international prominence after several years in abeyance caused by travel restrictions and the pandemic. Long-hitting Davies, 59, is a legend of the sport, a winner of four women’s major championships as well as two Women’s Australian Open championships (2009 and 2004). Inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2015, Davies has won more than 80 tournaments worldwide and has been a regular visitor to the Australian circuit for more than 20 years. The 32-year-old Ryu is a superstar of the sport who spent 19 weeks at world No. 1 in 2017. She is also a regular visitor to Australian shores, a six-time winner on the LPGA Tour including two major triumphs – the 2011 US Women’s Open and the 2017 ANA Inspiration. Ryu came incredibly close to winning the Women’s Australian Open in 2015 at Royal Melbourne, ultimately falling to Jessica Korda in a six-player playoff, and will be determined to win her first championship on Australian soil. Xiyu Lin, 26, is one of the best players on the LPGA Tour having jumped into the top 20 on the world rankings with a string of top-10 finishes in 2022 and a tie for 11th at the US Women’s Open behind the Australian Lee this year. Alex, 32, is another growing force having won on the LPGA Tour this year in California, while Shin is a former US Junior Amateur champion and veteran of the main tour who won her maiden LPGA Tour event in 2016. “This is fantastic boost for the tournament,” said James Sutherland, Golf Australia Chief Executive. “Having this calibre of player from overseas is only going to add to the excitement that the crowds in Melbourne are going to experience with our home-grown superstars Minjee Lee and Hannah Green playing at home for the first time in a while. “We’re delighted that some of the best players in the world have committed to our tournament at a time when we’re changing the look of the event and making it more inclusive. With all the top-ranked male players coming home as well and some DP World Tour players dropping into the field, we are very confident that this will be an Australian Open to remember for a long time.” The ISPS HANDA Australian Open from 1-4 December is supported by the Victorian Government through Visit Victoria.
It features not only the men’s and women’s Opens but the Australian All Abilities Championship, contested by 12 of the best golfers in the world with a disability.
Tickets, Hospitality and VIP Experiences are on sale via Ticketek now.
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