WA’s Minjee Lee will be leading the Australian assault at this week’s 2015 US Women’s Open starting early Friday morning Australian time.
The Championship is being played from the 9 to 12 July at the 6,483 yard, par 70 Lancaster Country Club in Pennsylvania.
For so many years, it was Queensland’s Karrie Webb who led the charge but with Lee overtaking Webb as the highest ranked Australian on the Rolex Women’s World Golf Rankings, she has taken over the baton, for this week anyway.
Lee is honoured to be the number 1 ranked Australian, “I am really excited to be Aussie no. 1. To represent Australia is such a great honour and I want to work even harder to keep my ranking as long as Webby did.”
Fellow compatriots joining Lee in the field are Webb, who won back-to-back Open championships in 2000 and 2001, fellow Queenslanders Katherine Kirk and Sarah Jane Smith, Victorian Breanna Elliott and RACV Ladies Masters Champion Su Oh. Elliott and Oh made it through the qualifying.
Elliott will be the first player to tee off Open on the 1st hole at 6.45am local time. Smith commences her round at 7.07am off the 1st as well. Webb gets underway at 8.13am off the 10th, while Oh is the other Aussie off in the morning wave at 8.57am off the 1st.
Both Kirk at 12.52pm and Lee at 1.47pm are in the afternoon wave in the opening round.
Lee spoke about the course and its challenges from Lancaster earlier this week,
“The course is in great condition, the rough is growing out & especially with the undulating greens; I think the tournament will shape up to be very challenging and a great test for us all. I really like the look of the course and we all love a challenge so I’m really looking forward to getting started.
When asked about her chances she responded “You never know when it’s going to be your week so I’m going to take one shot at a time and play smart golf. I want to enjoy the atmosphere and most of all have fun!”
Local newspapers have reported that they are expecting over 10,000 spectators to attend the event and the interest has been evident with great crowds during the practice rounds.
“I was surprised how many people were out spectating already just for the practise rounds!” said Lee.
156 players are vying for the Open title and their share of the US$4.5 million purse with the winner taking home a cheque for $810,000. American Michelle Wie is the defending champion.