Many of the Ladies European Tour members will continue their 2018 Australian swing this week when they tee up in the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open at Kooyonga Golf Club in Adelaide.
There are 52 Ladies European Tour members in the field for the tournament, including all the top 10 from the current order of merit.
Joining European number one Georgia Hall are Pernilla Lindberg, Caroline Hedwall, Anne Van Dam, Cheyenne Woods, Marianne Skarpnord, Sarah Kemp, Olivia Cowan, Amy Boulden and Jenny Haglund.
Fellow European Solheim Cup stars joining Hall are Charley Hull, Caroline Masson, Catriona Matthew, Azahara Muñoz, Karine Icher, Jodi Ewart Shadoff, Melissa Reid and Jodi Ewart Shadoff.
Hull said: “It feels good to be back in Australia and I’m really looking forward to this week, because I really like the golf course. I like Adelaide as well, because it’s nice and relaxed. I think all the courses that we play in the Australian Open are similar to the links courses at home in the UK. I feel good and I’ve been working hard this winter and putting a lot of work in.”
Fellow Briton Boulden felt that Kooyonga would present a stern test and anticipated higher winning scores than usual. “I think we’ll see quite a lot of the British players up there with it being quite linksy and the wind. It’s definitely my type of golf course, compared to last week, where you know it’s going to be low scoring. I think eight-under in total will win. It’s a good test out there.
“I really like it and it’s probably the best of the three courses that we’ve played in Adelaide, in my opinion. I really liked Royal Adelaide and I did quite well there, but I think this one is a little tougher. The greens are firm. The fairways are quite generous, but you’ve got to stay out of the bunkers. When you’re on the green, you’ve got to think about putting it in the right spot on the green. I think the wind will be quite a factor as well and if the wind gets up, it will be tough. None of the par fives are really reachable, it’s better to lay up on most of the par 5s and the par 3s are really strong.”
Anne Van Dam, the 2016 Xiamen International Open winner from the Nethelands, who finished third in last week’s ActewAGL Canberra Classic, said: “I hope I can continue my solid play from last week, but golf is a funny game. I’m definitely looking forward to this week. It’s a new week and a great course, it really suits my eye. You can be quite aggressive from the tee and hit some short irons in. It depends on the wind, but I’ll probably hit between three and five drivers. You really have to think, but my tee game is really good and I can be a bit more aggressive. The most important thing is to get the ball in the hole, so I’ve been working on my putting. David Buhai is caddying for me, so we’re a big team this week.”
Nicole Broch Larsen, the 2015 Helsingborg Open winner from Denmark, was another player who felt that she could be in the mix come Sunday. She said: “The course is amazing and it really suits my eye and my game. I think you have to be a good ball striker to win here. The greens are fast and firm and you’ve got to be a good putter as well. If it’s windy like today then it’s going to be a hard test. Yesterday was perfect with a little breeze, but with this wind it will be tough.”