ALL-STAR LINE UP SET TO MAKE 2015 HSBC WOMEN’S CHAMPIONS TRUE FESTIVAL OF SPORT
Anyone’s Game asTop Six Players Announced for “Asia’s Major” at Sentosa
: One of the biggest events in ladies golf worldwide has confirmed that the world’s top six ranked players*, Inbee Park (1), Lydia Ko (2), Stacy Lewis (3), Shanshan Feng (4), Suzann Pettersen (5) and Michelle Wie (6) will do battle for “Asia’s Major” when the 2015 HSBC Women’s Champions gets underway at Sentosa Golf Club, Singapore from 5 to 8 March 2015. (*Rolex Women’s World Golf Rankings, 12 January 2015)
The eighth edition of HSBC’s flagship championship will also see America’s Paula Creamer defend the title she claimed sodramatically with the shot of the year in 2014 by sinking an epic 75-foot eagle putt in a play-off with Spain’s Azahara Munoz to secure her place in the tournament’s history and hearts of all Singapore golf fans.
Widely recognised as the best women’s golf event staged by the LPGA in Asia and one of the best anywhere in the world, the tournament continues to build on its reputation as an event for champions with only the leading players from all corners of the world invited to take on the challenge of the acclaimed yet brutal Serapong course at Sentosa Golf Club.
South Korea’s Inbee Park, a four time Major winner, tops the end of year 2014 Rolex Rankings and is already looking forward to her Singapore foray. Park said, “This is one of the tournaments I really look forward to each year. Singapore is a fantastic city and the tournament has a ‘major’ feel to it with HSBC putting on a world-class event. I finished T4 last year and know the course suits my game so hopefully I can play well this year as it’s a title I would love to win to get my season off to the best possible start.”
World Number two, the record-breaking teenager, Lydia Ko, is both the youngest winner and youngest millionaire inLPGA history and finished 2014 in style, winning the season-closing CME Group Tour Championship. She was awarded 2014 LPGA Rolex Rookie of the Year after a stellar season including three wins, two runner-ups and nine additional top ten finishes.
Stacy Lewis, champion in 2013 and ranked three in the Official Rolex World Rankings, is looking forward to trying to win back her title on the Serapong and regain her place at the top of the world rankings. She explained, “I really enjoy this event and am proud of having won two years ago. I would like to win this again. It is a great tournament and so many of the world’s best players will be there again in March so I am excited to get back to Singapore to see if I can repeat my performance of 2013!”
Global Head of Sponsorship and Events at HSBC Giles Morgan said, “HSBC Women’s Champions is our flagship women’s event and has emerged into a truly world-class championship by any measure, becoming increasingly important for the world of golf and for the bank. HSBC is committed to opening up the world of golf so we are extremely proud that we will soon welcome the top six players in the world who hail from five different nations across the world.
“The game has changed beyond all recognition in recent years especially ladies golf which has never been so competitive or so global. It would be nearly impossible to choose a winner or even the nationalities on the leaderboard such is the international nature of the LPGA Tour. But that’s what makes ladies golf and this event so exciting and such compelling viewing. Just think of Paula’s putt and the scenes ofcelebration last year.
“It’s only one of the reasons why this tournament is so special for HSBC, for the players and for Singapore. Beyond the world-class action on the course, the atmosphere off it is just as electric. It really is one of the highlights of Singapore’s social calendar and we can’t wait for more of the same in March.”
Also joining the race to be crowned “Champion of Champions” are China’s first Major winner Shanshan Feng, Norway’s Suzann Pettersen, winner of the 2013 Evian Championship, and crowd favourite and 2014 US Open Champion Michelle Wie.
Wie added, “I'm so grateful for thesuccess I had in 2014 and I hope to continue it this year. Like all the girls, I love the HSBC Women’s Champions and I look forward to it every season. I had a top 10 in Singapore last year so I feel comfortable with the course and I am working hard over the off season to make sure I get to Asia ready to go! I look forward to seeing all the awesome fans in Singapore soon."
Guy Kinnings, Global Head of Golf at IMG,the tournament organizer, added, “The HSBC Women’s Champions is one of the players’ favourite events of the year and, once again, the strength and depth of the field gathered will illustrate that. All of the special extra touches HSBC add to enhance the tournament, as well as the warm welcome offered by Sentosa Golf Club, seem to ensure it is marked ‘unmissable’ on all the top players’ 2015 calendars.”
This year marks the eighth edition of thetournament often referred to as “Asia’s Major”. With a prize purse of US$ 1.4 million and one of the most competitive qualification criteria of any LPGA tournament, spectators can look forward to another elite sporting event in the Lion City.
For more information on the HSBC Women’s Champions 2015, please visit the tournament website at http://www.hsbcgolf.com/womens
– Pauline Courtois leads after first day
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