Suzhou, 25th October, 2011: World number one golfer Yani Tseng will be the woman to beat at this week’s Suzhou Taihu Ladies Open, where she will make her tournament debut from Friday.

The 22-year-old from Chinese Taipei is in Suzhou, China, for the October 28-30 tournament, which is tri-sanctioned by the Ladies European Tour (LET), Ladies Asian Golf Tour (LAGT) and China LPGA (CLPGA).

Yani Tseng practising her putting at Suzhou Taihu International Golf Club on Tuesday with her caddie Jason Hamilton.

It will be Tseng’s first and only appearance in China this season and she will be the star attraction, fresh from winning the inaugural LPGA Taiwan Championship on Sunday.

Her five shot victory secured her 10th title of the year following seven wins on the LPGA, one win on the LAGT and two additional victories on the LET, at the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open and ANZ RACV Ladies Masters in Australia.

Now in its fourth year, the €300,000 tournament at Suzhou Taihu International Golf Club will give spectators the opportunity to see the skills that have helped Tseng accumulate two major titles this year, at the LPGA Championship and Ricoh Women’s British Open, enabling her to become the youngest ever player to win five majors.

“I will try my best. Every week, every hole, every shot is a different challenge,” Tseng said. “I want to do my best, play one shot at a time and hopefully win, too.

It’s still very exciting to be here because it’s my first time in Suzhou and just a beautiful place, a nice hotel, nice golf course, very exciting and looking forward to playing this week.

Last week was a great memory. It was unbelievable and crowd was huge. I still feel very excited about last week now and hopefully this week we’re going to have lots of people to come out to watch too.”

Tseng still has four more tournaments to play this season, including Suzhou, two LPGA events and a less formal invitational event at home.

A total of 114 female golfers, including 55 from the Ladies European Tour and 29 from China, will tee up in the 54-hole Suzhou Taihu Ladies Open hoping to earn the €45,000 first prize.

Yani Tseng doing some light practice on the range at Suzhou Taihu International Golf Club.

Tseng will be joined by the defending champion Lee-Anne Pace of South Africa and four European Solheim Cup team members in the field.

The Solheim Cup players are Laura Davies from England, chasing her first title of the season, fellow Englishwoman Melissa Reid, who won two tournaments this year (Deloitte Dutch Ladies Open and Open de Espana Femenino), Christel Boeljon from the Netherlands, the Turkish Airlines Ladies Open champion who lost a four-way play-off at Suzhou last year and Sweden’s Caroline Hedwall, who has won three titles in this, her rookie season as a professional.  

Many other top players who have already won on the LET this year will compete including Australian Frances Bondad, who took the Sanya Ladies Open on Sunday; England’s Felicity Johnson, winner of last month’s Lacoste Ladies Open de France, Portugal Ladies Open champion Ashleigh Simon of South Africa and Australian Kristie Smith, who won earlier this year in New Zealand.