The LPGA Tour has left the west coast and arrived in Michigan for the Meijer LPGA Classic for Simply Give, which was cancelled last year due to COVID-19. Can Brooke Henderson win the event for the third time?
DEFENDING CHAMPION: Brooke Henderson shot 21-under-par 267 here in 2019 to defeat four players – Lexi Thompson, Nasa Hataoka, Brittany Altomare and Su Oh – by one shot.
COURSE: The course at Blythefield Country Club was designed by William Langford and Theodore Moreau and opened in 1929. It has hosted this event since its inception in 2014 and underwent an extensive Chris Wilczynski restoration last year. Bunkers were relocated and strengthened, while fairways were widened and realigned. Trees were also removed and greens were expanded to reflect their original design. The par-72 is listed at 6,070 metres for this week’s event.
PLAYERS TO WATCH …
Canadian Brooke Henderson has won this event twice – in 2017 and 2019 – and will surely be fancied by plenty of punters this week. There are, however, two major points to consider before laying down your hard-earned dollars.
One: Henderson withdrew from last week’s LPGA Mediheal Championship at Lake Merced Golf Club citing a non-COVID-19 related illness. Two: Blythefield Country Club has undergone an extensive redesign (outlined above) since this event was last played.
The 23-year-old was in fine form prior to last week’s withdrawal though, finishing T7th at the US Women’s Open, T10th at the Kingsmill Championship and winning the LA Open for her 10th LPGA Tour title.
RIGHT: Henderson won this event in 2017 and 2019, reaching 21-under on both occasions. PHOTO: Andy Lyons/Getty Images.
Victorian Su Oh has shown patches of her best golf throughout the season – but she is yet to string four rounds together, as she finds herself outside the top-100 ranked players for the first time since mid-2018.
Nevertheless, Oh, who has played on the LPGA Tour since 2016, should be feeling confident about her chances of securing her maiden Tour title when she arrives at Blythefield CC this week.
The 25-year-old finished runner-up to Brooke Henderson when this event was last played in 2019, shared 13th place the year prior and was T4th in 2017.
72-HOLE RECORD: American Lexi Thompson shot 18-under-par 266 in 2015 when she defeated her countrywomen Lizette Salas and Gerina Piller by one shot. Brooke Henderson and So Yeon Ryu, meanwhile, reached 21-under for their respective victories in 2017/2019 and 2018.
PAST AUSSIE WINNERS: No previous Australian winners.
AUSTRALIANS IN THE FIELD: Hannah Green, Sarah Kemp, Katherine Kirk, Su Oh, Gabriela Ruffels and Sarah Jane Smith.
Round 1: Friday (Fox Sports 505 LIVE 12:30am – 3:30am)
Round 2: Saturday (Fox Sports 505 LIVE 12:30am – 3:30am)
Round 3: Sunday (Fox Sports 505 LIVE 5am – 8am)
Round 4: Monday (Fox Sports 505 LIVE 3am – 6am)
*AEST, check local guides