Several ALPG members will return to action this week at the Lalla Meryem Cup in Morocco, while the usual ALPG crews will tee it up in the Yokohama Tire LPGA Classic in Prattville Alabama and the Self Regional Healthcare Foundation Women’s Health Classic in Greenwood South Carolina.
Rebecca Artis, Stacey Keating, Cathryn Bristow, Whitney Hillier and Bree Arthur will all tee it up this evening Australian time at the prestigious Club Royal Golf Dar Es Salam in Rabat.
While Keating has been keeping her eye in competing on the Symetra Tour in the US the past month, this event will be the first in almost two months for Artis, Bristow, Hillier and Arthur. They will be chomping at the bit to get going tonight,and hoping that they are ready to fire, competing for the 450,000euro prizemoney up for grabs this week.
The Lalla Meryem Cup in Morocco is played along similar lines to the Oates Victorian Open, however while the European Tour and Ladies European Tour are at the same venue they actually compete on different courses. The Oates Victorian Open remains the only major professional golf event on the planet where the men and the women play concurrently on the same golf course.
Across the Atlantic to the Yokohama Tire Classic on the LPGA Tour this week, the Aussie contingent of five have some very different form lines so far in 2016.
Sarah Jane Smith will hope her return to form continues as she chases a place in the Australia team to compete at the International Crown in July. Her T13th finish last week in Dallas saw her move inside the top 200 on the Rolex Rankings, she has just five weeks to chase down either Su Oh or Rebecca Artis to clinch the final place in the Australian team.
Minjee Lee is coming off a surprising missed cut last week in Dallas, however she has been on fire so far in 2016 and we should expect her to be contending in Prattville come the weekend. Karrie Webb also missed the cut last week by a single shot and will be hoping that she can also bounce back this week on a course which should suit her game.
2015 RACV Ladies Masters Champion Su Oh started 2016 with “Conditional status” on the LPGA Tour, however strong performances at the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open and the Swing Skirts Championship saw her re-ranked within her category and we should see her getting starts most weeks now on the LPGA Tour in 2016. Oh is a class act and she seems to be gaining confidence and momentum in 2016, to see her in the mix this week would not be a shock.
Katherine Kirk seems to be making some good progress herself in early 2016. She recently announced that she had become too technical with her golf swing in 2015 and has gone back to basics which has produced some solid if unspectacular results this year, while Sarah Kemp has struggled in the US so far this year and needs to find some form quickly if she is to qualify for the majors in the coming months.
On the Symetra Tour Bree Elliott, Emma De Groot and Liv Cheng will all be teeing it up at the Self Regional Healthcare Foundation Women’s Health Classic in Greenwood, South Carolina this week. The event carries prizemoney of US$250,000 making it one of the biggest purses on the Symetra Tour, our trio can go a long way to securing their LPGA Tour Card or exemptions to final qualifying with strong finishes this week.
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The 2016 Yokohama Tire LPGA Classic will be broadcast live in Australia starting on Friday morning on Fox Sports 3 from 2:30am AEDST.
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