Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Kraft Nabisco Championship Preview & Pairings

After a very exciting start to the LPGA season, the LPGA will be staging its first major championship this week with the playing of the Kraft Nabisco Championship.

This will be the first of 5 major championships on the 2014 LPGA schedule.

Winning a major championship can go a long way towards achieving the LPGA's most prestigious season ending awards. Player of the Year points and Rookie of the Year points are doubled for major championships. Twenty-five percent will be added to the normal value of points rewarded for the Race to the CME Globe and its one million dollar first prize.

This will be tournament #7 of 32 on this year's LPGA schedule.

Here are the key details:

Course:  Mission Hills Country Club, Dinah Shore Tournament Course
Location:  Rancho Mirage, California
Defending Champion:  Inbee Park
Winning Score:  70-67-67-6 = 273 (-15)

Final Field:  112 Players
Par:  36/36=72
Yardage:  6,738
Purse:  $2,000,000

The world famous Poppie's Pond

My strength of field rating is 89.5%, making it not only the strongest field of the year, but the strongest rating of any tournament in the 3 years that I have been writing my blog. The entire top 40 on the LPGA Priority List will be teeing it up, as well as the top 32 players on this week's Rolex Rankings.

Among the top players from other tours playing this week include:
Ha Na Jang - Rolex Ranked #17 - KLPGA Tour player
Jiyai Shin - Rolex Ranked #22 - JLPGA Tour player
Sakura Yokomine - Rolex Ranked #37 - JLPGA Tour player
Sey Young Kim - Rolex Ranked #39 - KLPGA Tour player
Charley Hull - Rolex Ranked #67 - LET Tour player

Other interesting entries include:
Brooke Henderson - Canada's top amateur player
Nelly Korda - Younger sister of Jessica Korda
Lee- Anne Pace - Although she does have an LPGA card, she is in the field because of her LET achievements. She is ranked #51 in the world. Look for her LPGA Priority List status to improve after the first reshuffle in a few weeks.

Here are the pairings for the first 2 rounds.

Here are the television times:
Apr 3 - GC 12:00 PM-3:00 PM ET
Apr 3 - GC 6:00 PM-9:00 PM ET
Apr 4 - GC 12:00 PM-3:00 PM ET
Apr 4 - GC 6:00 PM-9:00 PM ET
Apr 5 - GC 5:00 PM-9:00 PM ET
Apr 6 - GC 5:00 PM-9:00 PM ET

Here are my picks for this week's tournament:
1- Paula Creamer
2- Inbee Park
3- Stacy Lewis
4- Jessica Korda
5- Lexi Thompson
6- Lizette Salas
7- Cristie Kerr
8- Lydia Ko
9- Anna Nordqvist
10- Karrie Webb
11- Chella Choi
12- Na Yeon Choi
I won the Pak Picker contest last week for the second time this young season and have moved up from #4 to #2. There are currently 16 active players. It is not to late for new entries.

Other Tidbits:
Late last year when the LPGA announced its 2014 schedule, they held a spot for a new event to be held in China. It has now been officially given the title of  "Blue Bay LPGA," and will be held in Haiman Island China. It will be held October 20th to 26th.

Rolex Rankings Movers of the Week:
Kia Classic winner Anna Nordqvist jumps from #16 to #10, while Lizette Salas rises 7 spots to #14. The big mover outside the top 100 was Dori Carter who springs from her # 244 ranking all the way to #188.

Race to the CME Globe:
Karrie Webb continues to lead as she increased her point total to 1,288, Anna Nordqvist moves into the 2nd spot with 1,076. Paula Creamer is third with 1,028.

Who's Hot:
With Lydia Ko finishing in a tie for 61st at the Kia Classic, Azahara Munoz is now the only player to finish in the top 20 in all 6 LPGA tournaments this year. Michelle Wie has finished in the top 20 in all 5 tournaments she has played.

Who's Not:
Beatriz Recari has not finished better than 28th this year and has missed two cuts.
Angela Stanford has missed the cut in her last 2 tournaments.
Last Year's Rookie of the Year Moriya Jutanugarn has failed to register a top 25 yet this year. She has also missed 2 cuts in this young season.

Be sure to check back here periodically for tournament news and scoring updates. They will be added to the bottom of this blog. For live scoreboard links to all the ladies' tours, see the links at the top of this page.

UPDATE #1 - Suzann Pettersen has just withdrawn.
UPDATE #2 - Laura Davies has been removed from the field list. Tiffany Joh has been added. 

Here are the final results:
1Lexi Thompson-1473646968274$300,000
2Michelle Wie-1167716871277$187,584
3Stacy Lewis-773706969281$136,079
T4Cristie Kerr-669707172282$94,998
T4Se Ri Pak-667707174282$94,998
6Shanshan Feng-566737272283$69,323
T7Azahara Munoz-472707072284$51,522
T7Angela Stanford-474696972284$51,522
T7Charley Hull-473696676284$51,522
10Amy Yang-368737173285$41,594
For full results see link on top of this page.

 (1,003 current twitter followers)


2 comments:

  1. Suzann Pettersen withdrew 2 weeks in a row. Although she will still be ranked #2, but Stacy Lewis's score will come closer if she does well.

    ReplyDelete
  2. My picks:

    http://mlyhlss.blogspot.com/2014/04/my-picks-for-kraft-nabisco-championship.html

    ReplyDelete