Cassandra Kirkland (France)
The 22-year-old Cassandra Kirkland finished joint 14th at the Ladies European Tour’s Qualifying School for the 2007 season in November and this Parisienne will make her professional debut on the LET this year.
Kirkland attended the University of Arizona in the United States from 2002-2006 and was a member of the NGCA All American Team in 2005. She won the UNLV Invitational in 2005 and was presented with the Golfstat award for par-five scoring in 2004 and 2005. She was a semi-finalist in the British Girls’ Amateur Championship in 2001.
173cm tall with brown hair and hazel eyes, Kirkland started to play golf at age seven. Her hobbies and interests include all sports, reading, music, travel, movies, spending time with friends and physical training. She is attached to Club Saint Nom La Breteche in France and is related to Eddie Cheever, an Indy 500 winner, Formula 1 driver and IRA Team Owner.
|Maria Verchenova from Russia|
Verchenova, who is attached to Moscow City Golf Club, will make her professional debut this year after she finished joint 14th at Qualifying School.
174cm tall with dark brown hair and brown eyes, she started to play golf at the age of 12. She studied at the Moscow State University of Sport and lists dancing amongst her hobbies.
Verchenova was the Russian Amateur Champion in 2004 and 2006 and the Austrian Amateur Champion in 2006. She was both the Latvian Amateur Champion and Slovenian Amateur Champion in 2005. She was runner up in the 2006 World University Championships in Turin.
Hanna-Leena Salonen (Finland)
Salonen, 26, hails from the City of Kotka in Finland and she joins the LET after tying for 18th place at Q School.
As an amateur, Salonen finished 23rd in the 2006 Finnair Masters at Helsinki GC, where she was the leading amateur.
She was a Finnish National Team member from 1997-2006 and a member of the Finnish Golf Tour from 1998-2006, where she was an eight-time champion. (She is the tour’s current record holder for the most victories by a player).
She played on the Telia Tour from 2000-2006 where she won the 2004 Felix Finnish Ladies Open.
158cm tall with red/brown hair and grey/green eyes, Salonen started to play golf aged 10. Her hobbies and interests include home decorating, cooking, going to the gym and jogging. She is attached to Kymen Golf and has a website: www.hannaleenasalonen.fi
Bree Turnbull (Australia)
Turnbull finished joint 23rd at LET Q School, having just turned professional in September.
The 21-year-old from Perth represented Australia from 2005-2006 and was the winner of numerous state titles. She was a member of the Australian Tasman Cup Team in 2005 and was a member of the Western Australia State Team from 2002-2006. She also won the Western Australia State Championship and the Victoria Stroke Play Championship in 2004.
179cm tall with brown hair and green eyes, Turnbull started playing golf at the age of 11. She lists music, fitness and hanging out with friends amongst her hobbies.
Christine Hallström (Sweden)
Hallström, 24, won the 2006 Telia Tour Ranking, thereby automatically earning fully exempt status for the 2007 Ladies European Tour. In 2006, she posted nine top ten finishes and 14 top fifteen finishes on the Telia Tour, which is an official feeder tour to the LET. She won the Swedish Strokeplay Championship and was the player of the month in July. She also played on the Tour in 2005.
As an amateur, Hallström was a four-time winner of the Hulta Junior Open, from 2000-2003. She was the leading amateur in the following Telia Tour events: Rejmes Ladies Open 2003, Osteraker Ladies Open 2004.
Hallström attended Wake Forest University in the USA where she won an All-ACC Award in 2004. She was part of the winning team at the Lady Gator Invitational in 2005.
172cm tall with blonde hair and blue eyes, Hallström’s hobbies and interests include interior decorating, reading and spending time with family and friends. She started to play golf at the age of eight and was influenced by father and golf coach Magnus Elwin.
|Amy Yang, the 2006 ANZ Ladies Masters Champion|
Amy Yang (South Korea)
Amy won the ANZ Ladies Masters at Royal Pines GC in Australia at the beginning of February 2006 at the age of 16 years, 9 months and 18 days. She became the LET’s youngest ever winner and she was also the first amateur to win on Tour in 22 years, since Gillian Stewart won the IBM European Open at the Belfry in 1984.
Following her victory the LET’s Executive Director, Alexandra Armas, approved Amy’s membership of the LET – that approval requiring a special exemption due to her being under the age of 18 normally required for membership. Amy turned professional in October 2006 at the age of 17 and became the Tour’s youngest member. She earned exempt status as a tournament winner, which will see her exempt on the LET until November 30th, 2009.
Amy won the ANZ Ladies Masters with rounds of 70, 67, 70 and 68 for a 13-under-par 275 total. She defeated 22-year-old Catherine Cartwright of the United States in a one-hole play-off but because of Amy’s amateur status, Catherine Cartwright claimed the AUS$120,000 first prize. As a result of her playoff victory on Australia’s Gold Coast, Amy was invited to play in two further events on the Ladies European Tour as an amateur in 2006: the Evian Masters in France, where she finished tied 53rd and the Weetabix Women’s British Open at Royal Lytham & St Annes, where she finished 60th. She won the Smyth Salver as the leading amateur in the championship, beating Belen Mozo by six strokes. Amy was also the New Zealand Amateur Champion in 2005.
In October 2006, Amy made her professional debut at the Dubai Ladies Masters where she finished T4th in a quality field. She earned EUR 24,100 which placed her at 76th on the New Star Money List. The LET Players’ Council decided that Amy will compete as a rookie in 2007.
At the beginning of 2007, she played in the MFS Women’s Australian Open, where she tied for 20th place and the ANZ Ladies Masters, where she narrowly missed the cut.
Amy intends to play in nine LET tournaments in 2007 whilst continuing with her school studies at Robina High School on the Gold Coast in Australia.