Australian Ladies Professional Golf
Lauren Hibbert speaks about representing Team ALPG at The Queens Cup
Date: 8th December 2016
By: ALPG

Representing Team ALPG at The Queens presented by Kowa has to be my most memorable golfing adventure yet.

From the time we arrived at Nagoya airport in Japan we were greeted by the friendly Queens team who looked after us for the week and made us feel like royalty.

As a team we connected instantly and in true ALPG team spirit we all played our hearts out.
It was great experiencing the week as an entire team; the girls and our caddies, our wonderful captain Rachel and ALPG Staff Karen, Jen, Shani & Michelle. I can’t thank the whole team enough for the great time that was had, the comradery between us all and the friendships that were made that will last a lifetime.

Tuesday and Wednesday were the practice rounds and so my first look at Miyoshi Country Club. A spectacular looking course with sloped fairways surrounded by thick rough and often a fairway bunker or two to catch any wayward drive. The greens were big and undulating, many of them elevated and guarded by greenside bunkers. The 8th hole would have to be my favourite; a slightly downhill par 3 with an ‘L’ shaped green well-guarded by bunkers. A sight to see was the bonsai trees between the tee and green, perfectly manicured giving that real ‘Japanese’ look.

Thursday was Pro-Am and Team photo day, followed by the Eve Banquet at the Westin Hotel at the Nagoya Castle for a Japanese welcoming ceremony where the waitresses wore traditional kimonos and the Japanese chefs cooked the delicious food right in front of us.

Round 1 began on Friday, and was a foursomes match. I was paired with Aussie great Katherine Kirk and we played against Yukari Nishiyama and Megumi Shimokawa from Japan. We got off to a great start, birdieing the 1st hole to go 1 up and held the lead for most of the day, until the strong Japanese pair birdied each of the last 3 holes to grab the victory 2up. Both Katherine and I held our heads up high believing we did our best on the day and looked forward to what tomorrow could bring for team ALPG.

Saturday was round 2 Fourballs and I was again paired with Katherine Kirk. After our great match on Friday we were looking for revenge and this time we were against the strong European team of Catriona Matthew and Georgia Hall. They started well with birdies in 2 of the first 3 holes and so we found ourselves needing to fight early. Georgia made birdie after birdie and unfortunately we went down 6&4. We both fought hard but it just wasn’t meant to be. Su Oh & Whitney Hillier got the first points on the board for team ALPG, defeating Nanna Madsen and Linda Wessberg 2&1. This meant that team ALPG and team LET were to battle it out for 3rd and 4th place in Sunday’s singles matches while KLPGA and JAPAN LPGA battled for 1st and 2nd.

An early, chilly Sunday morning began the final 8 singles matches against the European Tour. As there are 9 girls in the team this meant one person was sat out each day and today that was me.  I went out and supported the team and watched them play some incredible golf. It was nerve-racking watching the leaderboard as the matches were so close. I was so proud of the way the girls handled themselves, being narrowly defeated by the LET 9 points to 7. A great fight put up by the girls, but we now have that extra fire in our hearts to come back even stronger next year.

I would like to give many thanks to the main sponsor KOWA, MBS, Miyoshi Country Club for their wonderful hospitality and the whole Queens staff for being so lovely and accommodating. From the gifts we received, to the ever polite Japanese people, I loved everything about The Queens Cup and was definitely an experience I will never forget.

 Representing Team ALPG at The Queens presented by Kowa has to be my most memorable golfing adventure yet.

From the time we arrived at Nagoya airport in Japan we were greeted by the friendly Queens team who looked after us for the week and made us feel like royalty.

As a team we connected instantly and in true ALPG team spirit we all played our hearts out.
It was great experiencing the week as an entire team; the girls and our caddies, our wonderful captain Rachel and ALPG Staff Karen, Jen, Shani & Michelle. I can’t thank the whole team enough for the great time that was had, the comradery between us all and the friendships that were made that will last a lifetime.

Tuesday and Wednesday were the practice rounds and so my first look at Miyoshi Country Club. A spectacular looking course with sloped fairways surrounded by thick rough and often a fairway bunker or two to catch any wayward drive. The greens were big and undulating, many of them elevated and guarded by greenside bunkers. The 8th hole would have to be my favourite; a slightly downhill par 3 with an ‘L’ shaped green well-guarded by bunkers. A sight to see was the bonsai trees between the tee and green, perfectly manicured giving that real ‘Japanese’ look.

Thursday was Pro-Am and Team photo day, followed by the Eve Banquet at the Westin Hotel at the Nagoya Castle for a Japanese welcoming ceremony where the waitresses wore traditional kimonos and the Japanese chefs cooked the delicious food right in front of us.

Round 1 began on Friday, and was a foursomes match. I was paired with Aussie great Katherine Kirk and we played against Yukari Nishiyama and Megumi Shimokawa from Japan. We got off to a great start, birdieing the 1st hole to go 1 up and held the lead for most of the day, until the strong Japanese pair birdied each of the last 3 holes to grab the victory 2up. Both Katherine and I held our heads up high believing we did our best on the day and looked forward to what tomorrow could bring for team ALPG.

Saturday was round 2 Fourballs and I was again paired with Katherine Kirk. After our great match on Friday we were looking for revenge and this time we were against the strong European team of Catriona Matthew and Georgia Hall. They started well with birdies in 2 of the first 3 holes and so we found ourselves needing to fight early. Georgia made birdie after birdie and unfortunately we went down 6&4. We both fought hard but it just wasn’t meant to be. Su Oh & Whitney Hillier got the first points on the board for team ALPG, defeating Nanna Madsen and Linda Wessberg 2&1. This meant that team ALPG and team LET were to battle it out for 3rd and 4th place in Sunday’s singles matches while KLPGA and JAPAN LPGA battled for 1st and 2nd.

An early, chilly Sunday morning began the final 8 singles matches against the European Tour. As there are 9 girls in the team this meant one person was sat out each day and today that was me.  I went out and supported the team and watched them play some incredible golf. It was nerve-racking watching the leaderboard as the matches were so close. I was so proud of the way the girls handled themselves, being narrowly defeated by the LET 9 points to 7. A great fight put up by the girls, but we now have that extra fire in our hearts to come back even stronger next year.

I would like to give many thanks to the main sponsor KOWA, MBS, Miyoshi Country Club for their wonderful hospitality and the whole Queens staff for being so lovely and accommodating. From the gifts we received, to the ever polite Japanese people, I loved everything about The Queens Cup and was definitely an experience I will never forget.

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