The Ladies European Tour (LET) returns to the beautiful surroundings of Morocco for the first time in four years this week, as 96 players from 25 countries compete for the Lalla Meryem Cup

Staged at Royal Golf Dar Es Salam in Rabat, the LET players will be competing on the Blue Course between 9-11th February in a 54-hole stroke play competition, while players from the PGA Tour Champions will be competing simultaneously for a separate trophy on the red course. 

The tournament marks the second event of the 2023 LET season, after last week’s Magical Kenya Ladies Open got the new Race to Costa Del Sol underway, with Aditi Ashok taking home the trophy after a wire-to-wire victory at Vipingo Ridge. 

There were also strong performances from LET rookies April Angurasaranee and Gabi Ruffels on the African East Coast, after registering second and fourth places respectively, and they will be looking to keep that early season momentum going as we head to the north of the continent this week. 

The English duo of Cara Gainer and Alice Hewson will also be looking to build on top five finishes in the season opener this week in Rabat, while 2019 Order of Merit winner Esther Henseleit will also be looking for another strong performance after a T7 finish last week. 

All eyes will be on 2022 Race to Costa Del Sol winner Linn Grant when the competition gets underway on Thursday, with the Swede getting her season underway, as she returns to action for the first time since the Andalucia Costa Del Sol Open De Espana in November last year. 

Runner-up and compatriot Maja Stark will also be performing on the LET for the first time in 2023 this week, and comes into the tournament in red-hot form having finished T2 in the Hilton Grand Vacations Tournament of Champions last month. 

All of the top eight on the 2022 Order of Merit will be competing in the Moroccan capital, with Grant and Stark joined by Johanna Gustavsson, Manon De Roey, Ana Peláez Trivino, Magdalena Simmermacher, Meghan Maclaren and Caroline Hedwall, in what promises to be a competitive week of action. 

There will be plenty of local interest in this year’s competition as well, with home favourites Maha Haddioui and Ines Laklalech the ones likely to catch the eye in their homeland, with the latter becoming the first Arab woman to win an LET event after claiming victory at the Lacoste Ladies Open de France in September last year. 

Ines Laklalech after winning the Lacoste Ladies Open de France in 2022. Credit: Tristan Jones/LET.

Thirteen-year-old Sofia Cherif Essakali will also be someone to keep an eye out for this week, with the Moroccan teenager winning the US Kids Golf 2020 World Championships for the 11-year-old age group at the Florida State Invitational. 

Nuria Iturrioz was the last woman to lift the trophy at Royal Golf Dar Es Salam when she claimed victory in 2019 – the second of two victories for the Spaniard on Moroccan soil having also done so in 2016 – and she will be looking for another strong performance in her season debut this week. 

The full tournament entry list can be found here.

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