The second Ladies European Thailand Championship has attracted a stellar field to Phoenix Gold Golf & Country Club this week, where Solheim Cup star Florentyna Parker, 2016 Order of Merit winner Beth Allen and the long-hitting Dutchwoman Anne Van Dam are joined by recent winners Astrid Vayson de Pradenne, Julia Engström and Carmen Alonso in Pattaya.
Van Dam, known as the ‘Dutch bomber’, has previously tasted success in Asia, as the winner of the 2016 Xiamen International Ladies Open in China. The 22-year-old from Arnhem, who tied for 17th in Thailand 12 months ago, will be looking to build on her strong start to the year after she finished third in the Canberra Classic in Australia.
Edinburgh-based Californian Beth Allen, 36, finished sixth in the same tournament and is looking to scoop her fourth LET title in her first appearance at the €300,000 Ladies European Thailand Championship, on June 21-24.
Meanwhile Parker is also playing for her fourth LET title following her play-off victory over Anna Nordqvist and Carlota Ciganda at the 2017 Estrella Damm Mediterranean Ladies Open. She has shown consistent results this year with her best result so far being fifth in the Investec SA Women’s Open. The Hamburg-based Englishwoman, who will celebrate her 29th birthday on the eve of the championship, tied for 17th in Pattaya last year.
A rising star to watch will be the 17-year-old Swede Julia Engström, who is leading the LET rookie rankings after six tournaments. She tied for fifth in the Lalla Meryem Cup in Morocco and recently won the Viaplay Ladies Finnish Open on the LET Access Series.
The other players riding a wave of confidence will include Spain’s Carmen Alonso, who recorded her first international professional win at the AXA Czech Ladies Challenge at Golf Resort Konopiste in Bystrice on Saturday, while Frenchwoman Astrid Vayson de Pradenne won the Dual Ranked Jabra Ladies Open at the Evian Resort Golf Club and will be making her first appearance as an LET tournament winner.
Mexico’s Ana Menendez, who finished second last year and took home the first prize winner’s cheque for €45,000, due to the winner Atthaya Thitikul’s amateur status, will be hoping to go one better this year, while Australian Whitney Hillier, whose mother is from Thailand, will also be looking for another podium finish – or even her first LET title – after finishing third in the inaugural Ladies European Thailand Championship last year.