The LPGA Tour returns this week, with the world’s best players headed to Texas for the final tune-up before the US Women’s Open next week.
DEFENDING CHAMPION: Playing her rookie year on the LPGA Tour, Cheyenne Knight took home the spoils from Texas last year after a dominant performance with her putter. The 23-year-old was two shots ahead of her nearest chasers at the conclusion of the fourth round.
COURSE: Designed by Tripp Davis and major champion Justin Leonard, Old American Golf Club was created as an ode to some of America’s early great courses, including Shinnecock Hills and the National Golf Links.
Part of a 36-hole facility with the neighbouring The Tribute at The Colony Golf Club, Old American hosts this event for the third straight year this week and will measure 6,475 yards and play to a par of 71.
PLAYERS TO WATCH …
Minjee Lee will be bursting with confidence as she attempts to add a sixth LPGA Tour win having recently claimed a Ladies European Tour victory in Dubai before a share of 15th at the recent Pelican Women’s Championship.
Lee was T19 at this event the last time she teed it up in 2018, having shared fifth the year prior, and with her short game a standout aspect of her game in 2020, one would expect her to find herself in the mix here.
Jeongeun Lee6 was unquestionably a little rusty on her return to the LPGA Tour at the Pelican Women’s Championship, where she made her first start since the Women’s Australian Open. But don’t expect that to continue.
RIGHT: Cheyenne Knight claimed her first LPGA Tour win at Old American Golf Club in 2019. PHOTO: Chuck Burton/Getty Images.
The 2019 Rookie of the Year was T8 here last year and is an exemplary ball striker, who will be looking to finish the year strongly having shown good form throughout the year on the Korean LPGA Tour, where she is a six-time winner. Korean players have won this event four of the seven times it has been played and Lee6 making it five from eight would be of little surprise.
Sophia Popov makes another LPGA Tour start this week, and appears set to becoming a regular contender on the premier women’s circuit following her major win at the Women’s Open Championship.
The German, who has lived in America for most of her life, fired an opening round 64 in her last start before a disappointing third round cruelled her chances of contending once again, Popov eventually sharing 15th. The 28-year-old’s ability to go low will suit here.
72-HOLE RECORD: American Knight set the tournament scoring record with her maiden win in 2019. Knight reached 18-under (266) to win by two from Brittany Altomare and Jaye Marie Green.
PAST AUSSIE WINNERS: No previous Australian winners.
AUSTRALIANS IN THE FIELD: Hannah Green, Sarah Kemp, Katherine Kirk, Minjee Lee, Su Oh and Sarah Jane Smith.
Round 1: Friday (Fox Sports 503 H’LGHTS 11am – 1pm)
Round 2: Saturday (Fox Sports 503 H’LGHTS 10:30am – 12:30pm)
Round 3: Sunday (Fox Sports 507 H’LGHTS 10am – 12pm)
Round 4: Monday (Fox Sports 503 LIVE 5am – 8am)
*AEDT, check local guides