History will be made this week when some of the world's best amateur lady golfers tee it up at Augusta in this inaugural event
Augusta National Women’s Amateur Preview
This week marks history as 72 leading amateur ladies tee it up in the inaugural Augusta National Women’s Amateur.
The tournament begins on 3rd April and will see the women tackle 54 holes, 36 of which are at the nearby Champions Retreat on Wednesday/Thursday before the final day at Augusta National Golf Club on Saturday.
The final day will feature 30 ladies after a 36 hole cut, whilst all 72 competitors will get the chance to have a practice round on the Friday after the opening two days.
The winner receives the special trophy, which features a base carved from magnolia trees and pictures of the flowers each hole at Augusta National is named after on the trophy itself.
There will be some opening ceremonial tee shots, just like The Masters, with legend Annika Sorenstam lined up.
“This is huge. You know the importance of Augusta National and golf, and what they have done with the Masters and the Drive, Chip and Putt, and now the women’s amateur,” Sorenstam said.
“It really is special. It’s a milestone in the game.”
The event truly is a groundbreaking one, especially when you consider that Augusta National only allowed women members in 2012, with Condoleezza Rice and Darla Moore becoming the first female members of the club.
Home hopes this week come from Belfast’s Olivia Mehaffey, Kingston-upon-Thames’ Annabell Fuller, and Essex’s Lily May Humphreys.
One golfer who tragically isn’t competing this week is Celia Barquin.
The Spaniard was murdered last year just three months after winning the European Ladies Amateur Championship.
Our thoughts are with her and her family/friends this week.
Related: How can I play Augusta National?
It is the women’s first Major of the season this week as well at the ANA Inspiration which does mean that a few of the world’s best amateurs are missing from the Augusta field.
However, saying that, the world’s number-one-ranked amateur Jennifer Kupcho is playing, as is Thailand’s Attiya Thitikul who won on the LET at the age of 14.
Four players – Patty Tavatanakit, Frida Kinhult, Albane Valenzuela and Rachel Heck – have had to turn down the tournament in favour of the ANA Inspiration.
The winner this week, as well as receiving the trophy, will also earn a five-year exemption back into this event.
They’ll also qualify for the 2019 Women’s British Open, the 2019 US Women’s Open and any USGA, R&A and PGA of America amateur championships for which she is eligible for one year.
With the announcement of this tournament last year, golf fans across the world became excited as it meant we would be able to see more of Augusta.
However, there appears to be no UK TV broadcaster so let’s hope that the Augusta National Women’s Amateur (@anwagolf on Twitter) will be showing plenty of action online.
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