A great opportunity for Sarah Kemp – file photo Bruce Young
A horror year for international golf finally comes to an end this weekend when the final event of the LPGA Tour season is completed at the CME Group Tour Championship at the Tiburon Golf Club in Naples in Florida.
The US3 million event has attracted a field of 72, four of them Australians along with New Zealander Lydia Ko who is playing an event she won in 2014 after a playoff. The leading 70 players for the season make the field and in a strange twist for such a significant event two sponsors invites make up the field.
In a pleasant surprise for Australians, Sarah Kemp has gained a start in the event, being included as one of the two invitations along with Natalie Gulbis. Kemp has a commercial arrangement with the CME Group but the inclusion of she and Gulbis is somewhat of a surprise despite the rights of a tournament sponsor to invite who they like.
It is, though, a great opportunity for Kemp who has just $US43,000 to her name for the season and who has made just five cuts in the 13 events she has played on the LPGA Tour in 2020. It will be the first time Kemp has played the event.
Minjee Lee, Katherine Kirk and Hannah Green are the other Australians in the field and will be joined by their trans-Tasman colleague Ko.
Lee has a less than impressive record in the event having recorded just the one top ten (7th) on debut in 2015. Green has been no better than 48th in her two appearances and Kirk’s best was when 18th last year.