World No 2 Lydia Ko, long-hitting American Lexi Thompson and Australian sensation Minjee Lee will tee-off in this year’s Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia at at Kuala Lumpur Golf & Country Club on October 8-11.
New Zealander Ko , who broke a host of records in her ascendancy to the top of the game last year, will be looking to improve on her tied-eighth place finish on the East Course last year. The 18-year-old recently lost her world no.1 ranking to Korean Inbee Park but will be hoping that a good run on the Asian Swing will see her reclaim the top spot before the year-end.
Speaking about her return to Malaysia, Ko said: “It’s a great tournament! I played it for the first time last year and while fortunate to start out strong early on, somehow I couldn’t quite keep it going through the weekend. But I really enjoy the course so I’m looking forward to returning this
year. The fan support for all of us players out on the course is amazing!! I’m sure it’ll be another great tournament for everyone.”
A player with first hand experience of what it takes to win in Malaysia is Thompson. Champion here in 2013, the 20 year old from Florida took no time in confirming her participation in the US$ 2 million event. The world no. 13 has enjoyed mixed fortunes on tour this year with six top ten finishes to date, but is yet to repeat the form she showed at end of 2013 and into the first half of 2014. A favourite among Malaysian golf fans, she is sure to get plenty of support around KLGCC in October.
One of the most exciting prospects to join the LPGA Tour this year is 19-year-old Australian Minjee Lee. After a stellar amateur career, Lee turned professional in September 2014 and made headlines in May when she picked up her first LPGA Tour win at the Kingsmill Championship. With 4 top-ten finishes to her name and earnings of over US$ 500,000 in her rookie year to date, Perth-born Lee has a very bright future ahead of her.
Looking ahead to her Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia debut, the world no. 18 said: “I’m looking forward to coming to Malaysia. I’ve had a great first year on tour so far and managed to get my first win so it’s been a pretty amazing start. Right now I’m just trying to get as much experience as possible. The return to Asia in a few months should be exciting and a bit closer to home for me. I’ve never actually played in Malaysia but I’ve heard great things about the tournament so I’m looking forward to it.”
The sixth edition of the US$ 2 million purse Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia will take place on the East Course of KLGCC from 8-11 October 2015. 75 players, made up of 63 players from the LPGA tour, a minimum of five Malaysian nationals and seven further sponsor exemptions, will compete in the 72-hole, no cut tournament for one of the largest purse events in Asia.
With a host of activities planned for the week, including the KL Food Truck Festival’s golf tournament debut, the Courtyard – where spectators can enjoy food, music and the opportunity to meet the stars of the LPGA Tour – and a Kids Zone down by the swimming pool, there will be no shortage of entertainment for everybody.
For updates, visit www.facebook.com/SimeDarbyLPGAMalaysia. Tournament activities can also be followed on Twitter and Instagram @SimeDarbyLPGA, #SimeDarbyLPGA, #WomenWithDrive.