Major winners seek to join Championship field headed by all of world’s top 25 players
Dame Laura Davies and Paula Creamer are two of the biggest names in the field for Final Qualifying for the 2017 Ricoh Women’s British Open to be played at The Castle Course, St Andrews, next Monday (July 31st)
Both Davies and Creamer are battling to win a place through this week’s Aberdeen Asset Management Ladies’ Scottish Open where the winner automatically qualifies for the Ricoh Women’s British Open along with the leading three LET members not otherwise qualified. Should they not make it via that route they will be among a strong international field of more than 100 players battling for approximately 20 places in the field for the Championship, which starts at Kingsbarns Golf Links on Thursday August 3rd.
Davies is looking to extend her remarkable streak of 36 consecutive appearances in her home Major, after having won the Women’s British Open back in 1986, as well as the 1987 US Women’s Open, the 1994 McDonald’s LPGA Championship, the 1996 McDonald’s LPGA Championship, the 1996 du Maurier Classic and almost 80 other titles around the world.
America’s Paula Creamer has also been one of the most popular figures in the women’s game since 2005, and counts the 2010 US Women’s Open among her list of ten Tour titles. Her best finish in the Ricoh Women’s British Open came back in 2012 when she claimed third place at Royal Liverpool. She is aiming to qualify for her 13th outing at the Championship.
Both are seeking to join a stellar field at the 2017 Ricoh Women’s British Open, headed by Defending Champion Ariya Jutanugarn. Confirmed players include all of the world’s top 25 ranked players such as: Olympic Gold medallist Inbee Park, Silver Medalist Lydia Ko, and Bronze medal winner Shanshan Feng and 2017 Major winners So Yeon Ryu (ANA Inspiration), Danielle Kang (KPMG Women’s PGA Championship) and Sung Hyun Park (US Women’s Open). The tournament features five former Ricoh Women’s British Open Champions, 24 Major Champions and 22 Solheim Cup players with 78 appearances amongst them, including 2009 Champion Catriona Matthew from Scotland.
This year’s Final Qualifying competition looks set to be a real nail-biter with players of the calibre of Minea Blomqvist, Amy Boulden, Nicole Broch Larsen, Caroline Hedwall, Vicky Hurst, Christina Kim, Bronte Law, Meghan MacLaren, Nanna Koerstz Madsen, Belen Mozo, Gwladys Nocera and Luna Sobron. They will be competing alongside Scotland’s own Gemma Dryburgh, Vicky Laing, Kelsey MacDonald, Heather Macrae, Michele Thomson, Jane Turner and Sally Watson.
Amateur World No. 1 Leona Maguire is exempt but the Final Qualifier also features a number of other leading amateurs, including Mathilda Cappeliez, India Clyburn, Julia Engstrom, Sophie Lamb, My Leander, Amanda Linner, Olivia Mehaffey, Kim Metraux, Linnea Strom, Dewi Weber and Annabel Wilson, making this one of the strongest crop of amateurs ever seen in the event. Engstrom and Linner were both part of the Swedish team that were runaway winners of the recent European Girls’ Team Championship in Finland, while Mehaffey, Engstrom and Strom are all in the top-20 of the Women’s World Amateur Golf Ranking.
Kingsbarns, making its debut on the Ricoh Women’s British Open Championship rota, has hosted the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship since 2001, as well as the Final Qualifying for The Open in 2010 and the 2013 Ricoh Women’s British Open Final Qualifying. The course has been widely acclaimed by players and media alike since its opening 14 years ago.
The Ricoh Women’s British Open was founded by the Ladies’ Golf Union in 1976 and has been staged in conjunction with IMG, a global leader in sports, events, media and fashion, since 1984. The event has been co-sanctioned by the LPGA and LET since 1994, and gained Major status in 2001.
Ricoh, a global technology company specialising in office imaging equipment, production print solutions, document management systems and IT services, has been the title sponsor of the Ricoh Women’s British Open since 2007.
The partnership between VisitScotland and the Ricoh Women’s British Open, which started in 2011, ensures that the Championship is played in Scotland five times over a decade.