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Golf: Lydia, Lexi lead youngsters heading to KL; Minjee eyes debut

World No. 2 Lydia Ko will return to the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia in October. Photos: Getty Images.

World No. 2 Lydia Ko will return to the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia in October. Photos: Getty Images.

July 23, 2015: World No. 2 Lydia Ko has confirmed she will participate in the US$2 million Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia, which will be held at Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club (KLGCC) from October 8-11.

 

Ko, 18, broke a host of records in her ascendancy to the top of the game, but recently lost her No. 1 ranking to Park In-bee, so the Korea-born Kiwi will be looking to improve on her tied-eighth place finish on the East Course last year.

 

“It’s a great tournament,” Ko said. “I played it for the first time last year and while fortunate to start out strong early on, somehow I couldn’t quite keep it going through the weekend, but I really enjoy the course so I’m looking forward to returning this year.”

 

Lexi Thompson, 20, will also return to one of Asia’s richest women’s golf events as the six-foot American slugger seeks to wrestle back the title she won in 2013, while Australian rookie Minjee Lee will make her tournament debut.

 

Australian teenager Minjee Lee will compete in Malaysia for the first time, boosted by her first LPGA win in May.

Australian teenager Minjee Lee will compete in Malaysia for the first time, boosted by her first LPGA win in May.

After a stellar amateur career, Lee turned professional in September 2014 and made headlines in May when she picked up her first LPGA Tour win at the Kingsmill Championship. The Perth-born 19-year-old has four top-10 finishes to her name and earnings of over US$ 500,000 in her rookie year to date.

 

“I’m looking forward to coming to Malaysia. I’ve had a great first year on tour so far and managed to get my first win so it’s been a pretty amazing start. Right now I’m just trying to get as much experience as possible,” said Lee, currently World No. 18.

 

“The return to Asia in a few months should be exciting and a bit closer to home for me. I’ve never actually played in Malaysia, but I’ve heard great things about the tournament so I’m looking forward to it.”

 

The event’s sixth edition will comprise 75 players made up of 63 LPGA tour players, a minimum of five Malaysian nationals and seven sponsor exemptions competing in a 72-hole, no-cut tournament.

 

Source: Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia (http://simedarbylpgamalaysia.com); Editing by SportAsia

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