Skip to main content

Honda LPGA Thailand Preview, Pairings, and More

There's a new Ko in town!

A big congratulations goes out this week to Jin Young Ko for winning the ISPS Handa Women's Australian Open. This was Ko's first tournament as an LPGA member, and she made it a memorable one. Ko took the lead at the end of the first round and held it throughout. Her -14 under par score of 274 was three strokes better than runner up (non LPGA member) Hyejin Choi.

Related image

This week the LPGA moves to Thailand for the playing of the Honda LPGA Thailand. Last season brought us close finishes in almost every tournament.....but this was not one of them. Amy Yang's twenty-two under par total of 266 was a new tournament record, and blew away the rest of the field. So Yeon Ryu finished 2nd, five strokes back.

Image result for amy yang wins honda lpga thailand
Amy Yang proudly holds up her 2017 Honda LPGA Thailand trophy.

This will tournament #3 of 33 on this year's LPGA schedule.

Here are the key details:

Course:  Siam Country Club, Pattaya Old Course

Location:  Chonburi, Thailand
Defending Champion:  Amy Yang
Winning Score: 66-67-65-68 = 266 (-22)

Final Field:  69 Players

Par:  36/36 = 72
Yardage:  6,642
Purse:  $1,600,000

My strength of field rating is a very solid 72.5% ( down from  77.5 last year). Forty-five of the top 50 players from the LPGA Priority List, and 35 of the top 50 players from the Rolex Rankings will be in attendance. The field will be led by Shanshan Feng, Sung Hyun Park, So Yeon Ryu, Lexi Thompson, and Anna Nordqvist. Non LPGA stars teeing it up this week include: Ha Neul Kim (#38 in Rolex Rankings), Bo Mee Lee (#60), and Misuzu Narita (#83). The very popular Muni He (who will be playing on the Symetra Tour this year) will be playing as a sponsor invitee.

Players skipping the event include: I.K. Kim, Inbee Park, Suzann Pettersen, and Hyo Joo Kim. 

Here are the first round pairings.

Here are the television times:
Thursday Feb 21 - GC 10:00  AM - 2:00AM ET
Friday      Feb 23 - GC 1:00  AM - 5:00AM ET
Saturday  Feb 24 - GC 1:00  AM - 5:00AM ET
Sunday    Feb 25 - GC 1:00  AM - 5:00AM ET     

Players Most likely to win: (Top players in the field)
1- Shanshan Feng - Will need to play well to hang on to her #1 ranking.
2- Sung Hyun Park - Making her 2018 debut. A win would vault her into the #1 position.
3- So Yeon Ryu - Number 3 player in the world can move to the top with a victory.

Players to watch out for: (I'm feeling it this week)
1- Lexi Thompson - Has won here before. A win here could also take her to #1.
2- In Gee Chun - Because she always plays well here.
3- Jin Young Ko - Can she make it two for two?

Longshot Picks: (Not likely, but not impossible)
1- Georgia Hall - Can we have another rookie winner this week?
2- Angel Yin - Will bounce back from her poor showing in Australia.

Other Tidbits:

We have had seven LPGA players shoot a 9 under par 63 on this course. Nobody has shot a 62.

It was a very strong showing for rookies in Australia this weekend. In addition to Jin Young Ko winning the top prize, Hannah Green finished 3rd, Emma Talley 7th, and Georgia Hall 13th.

Rolex Rankings Movers of the Week:
Jin Young Ko makes the most important move this week jumping up from #20 to #16. Madelene Sagstrom leaps up from #74 to #68, while Hannah Green catapults from #140 to #96 and into my future field ratings. On the downside, Karrie Webb drops 3 spots to #101 and out of my field ratings.

Race to the CME Globe:   (1 million dollars)
Brittany Lincicome and Jin Young Ko are tied for the lead with 500 points apiece. They are followed by Wie-Ling Hsu (337) and Hannah Green (260).

Who's Hot:
Amazingly, no player on the LPGA tour finished in the top ten in both of the first two tournaments. Hannah Green was the most impressive, finishing 11th in the Bahamas and 3rd in Australia.

Who's Not:
Haru Nomura failed to finish better than 40th in her first two starts.

This Week's Trivia Question: 
This will be the 12th year for this tournament. In the previous 11 years, nine different players have won. Who are the two  players to win here twice?

For the answer to this week's trivia question press here.

Here are the final results:

1 Jessica Korda -25
2 Lexi Thompson -21
2 Moriya Jutanugarn -21
4 Minjee Lee -18
5 Shanshan Feng -17
5 Ariya Jutanugarn -17
7 Jin Young Ko -16
7 Pornanong Phatlum -16
7 Brittany Lincicome -16
7 Brooke Henderson -16
11 Michelle Wie -15
12 Megan Khang -14
13 Charley Hull -13
14 Azahara Munoz -12
14 Austin Ernst -12
14 Nicole Broch Larsen -12
14 Amy Yang -12
14 Nelly Korda -12
19 Anna Nordqvist -11
19 Danielle Kang -11
19 Carlota Ciganda -11
22 Sei Young Kim -10
22 Cristie Kerr -10
22 Sung Hyun Park -10
22 In Gee Chun -10

Be sure to check back here daily for any LPGA news or updates.  They will be posted here at the bottom of this blog. 
Tournament results will be posted here at the end of each round. Links to all Women's Tour scoreboards can be found on the right side of this page 
(or on pull down menu on mobile website).


Popular posts from this blog

LPGA Player Profile - Natalie Gulbis

With the LPGA taking a one week break before resuming its schedule in the state of Texas, I want to take this opportunity to do my fifth player profile.

The player I have chosen this time around, may very well be in the twilight of her career, but has been a crowd favorite for many years. I have chosen:


Born: 1/7/83 (34 years old)
Hometown: Sacramento Calif.
Resides: Lake, Las Vegas, Nev.
Rookie Year: 2002

Natalie has won once on the LPGA tour:

2007 Evian Masters

 Natalie has had many of her best finishes in Major Championships!

Best Finishes in Major Championships:

ANA Inspiration - Finished 3rd in 2006KPMG Women's PGA Championship - Finished 5th in 2005U.S. Women's Open - Finished 4th in 2005Ricoh British Open - Finished 9th in 2013The Evian Championship - Finished 52nd in 2013 (It was not a Major Championship when she won this event).

Career Stats:

318 career starts237 cuts made (74.5%)37 top tens (11.6%)Has $4,892,233 in career earnings through the 2016 season (57…

LPGA Reshuffles 2018 Priority List

The LPGA had its first reshuffle of its Priority List this week. While most of the players moved up or down a few insignificant spots, there were some very significant moves also.

The Priority List is what is used to fill the required amount of spots for any given tournament. Without me getting into the categories, which is potentially confusing, here is a brief explanation. Most full field events have a field of 144 players. Usually 140 of the players come from the Priority List ranking. Two players are Monday qualifiers, and 2 more are sponsor exemptions. So to keep it simple, if your Priority Rating is #150, you have to hope that 10 players decide not to play, or you are probably not getting into the field.

The following players made some of the biggest jumps in this week's reshuffle (and by getting into the top 100 become part of my weekly field rating):
Bronte Law - 108 to 86
Amy Olson - 112 to 88
Nasa Hataoka - 116 to 92
Caroline Inglis - 126 to 93
Hee Young Park - 106 to 94

Most Popular Photos of the Year - 2017

1/9/18 - Bonus pics added at bottom of this page!

As many of my readers know, my wife and I go to quite a few LPGA tournaments each year. Since 2010 we have gone to over 50 events, including two in Scotland (St. Andrews being our favorite), and the last 8 Canadian Opens.

I do all the writing on here (my wife who is a teacher, is my proofreader), while my wife Cindy does most of the picture taking. Neither of us are professional photographers, but once in a while we get lucky and capture a moment that is very popular with my viewers.

Below I have reposted the most popular photos of 2017. I based this on the number of website hits, and the number of comments each photo received. Some came as quite a surprise to me, as when they were taken I was not expecting such a reaction.


What in the World Has Happened to Yani Tseng?

The 2013 LPGA season has brought us lots of surprises. We have had first time winners. We have had winners from 7 different countries. Five Major Championships were played for the first time, with one player (Inbee Park) winning 3 of them. We have even had 4 players win multiple championships this year. However the biggest surprise to date has to be the tumble taken by Yani Tseng.

Yani started the 2013 season ranked as the #1 player in the world. In fact, at one point during the 2011 season, the #2 ranked player in the world (Na Yeon Choi), was closer to the 180th Rolex ranked player than she was to Yani at #1. It seemed Yani would be number one forever.

Let us look at some of her accomplishments:

In 2008, at the age of 19, Yani won the LPGA Championship.
In 2009, Yani became the fastest player in LPGA history to reach $2 million in career earnings. She did it in only 32 events.
In 2010 Yani won 3 times, including 2 more championships.
In 2011 Yani won 7 times, including 2 more major…

LPGA Player Profile: Sandra Gal (and much more)

Let me start off by giving a big congratulations to Brooke Henderson for winning the MCKAYSON New Zealand Women's Open. Brooke took the lead from Belen Mozo early in round four and never looked back. She shot a final round 3 under par 69 , to finish 271 (-17), which was 5 strokes better than runner-up Jing Yan.

For the 20 year old Henderson, who is in her second full year on tour, it was her fifth LPGA victory (which includes one Major Championship) and second this year.

With the LPGA having an unexpected week off (the Alisport LPGA tournament was cancelled) it gives some time to do another LPGA player profile.

The player I have chosen this week is Sandra Gal.

Born:  May 9, 1985
Hometown:  Cologne, Germany
Resides:  Orlando, Fla.
Rookie Year:  2008

Sandra has one victory on the LPGA Tour.
2011 Kia Classic

Best finishes in major championships:

ANA Inspiration - 15th in 2011KPMG Women's PGA Championship - 12th in 2015U.S. Women's Open - 3rd in 2012Ricoh Women's British Open …

LPGA Player Profile: Belen Mozo

With the LPGA taking a one week break before resuming its schedule in the United States, I thought it would be a good time to do my third LPGA player profile.

The player I have chosen this time around, may not be a household name like the first two were, but I have received a number of requests to do this profile.

Belen Mozo

Pronounced: (bay-LEN moh-thoh) Born: 9/25/88 (28 years old) Hometown: Cadiz, Spain Resides: Cartagena, Colombia College: USC Rookie Year: 2011 2016 Earnings: $76,263 (104th)

Belen has not yet won on the LPGA tour: Here are her best finishes: Finished 5th at the 2016 LPGA Volvik ChampionshipFinished 4th at the 2014 Manulife Financial LPGA ClassicFinished 10th at the 2014 Airbus LPGA ClassicFinished 5th at the 2011 Walmart NW Arkansas Championship
Best Finishes in Major Championships: ANA Inspiration (formerly the Kraft Nabisco Championship) - Finished 41st in 2013KPMG Women's PGA Championship - Finished 58th in 2013U.S. Women's Open - Finished 55th in 2014Ricoh …

U.S. Women's Open Preview, Pairings, and More

Before I get started on this week's tournament, let me give a big congratulations to Minjee Lee for winning the LPGA Volvik Championship. Minjee's final round -4 under par 68, was good enough to win by one stroke over runner-up In Kyung Kim.

This week the LPGA travels to the state of Alabama for the playing of the U.S. Women's Open Conducted by the USGA. This is the second Major Championship of the 2018 season.

Sung Hyun Park will be trying to successfully defend the title she won last year at Trump National Golf Club by two strokes over Hye Jin Choi.

This will be tournament #14 of 33 on this year's LPGA schedule. It is also the 2nd of five Major Championships to be held this year.

Course:  Shoal Creek
Location:  Shoal Creek, Alabama
Defending Champion:  Sung Hyun Park
Winning Score:  73-70-67-67 = 277 (-11)

Final Field:  156 players
Cut: Top 60 and ties
Par:  36/36 = 72
Yardage:  6,732
Purse:  $5,000,000

My strength of field rating is a mighty 87% (down from 91% last year). The re…