The LPGA Tour Hilton Grand Vacations Tournament of Champions, which opened on the 20th in Korea time, is a little far from the attention of domestic golf fans. This is because, unusually, not a single player with Korean nationality is playing.
Only the winners of the last two years can participate in this competition. In Korea, Ko Jin-young, Jeon In-ji, Kim Hyo-joo, Park In-bi, and Ji Eun-hee were eligible to participate, but no one submitted an application. Over the past two years, the number of winners has decreased, and among them, no players are expected to start the season from the opening game in January, making it impossible to see Korean players.
The reasons for non-participation are manifold. First, Ko Jin-young, ranked fifth in the women’s golf world rankings, was affected by her wrist injury. But a problem arose. Because of the rule, if she does not compete in the same tournament for four consecutive years, she will be fined $25,000. She is Ko Jin-young, and there is also a clause that exempts her from injury or other appropriate reasons. This is the reason why Ko Jin-young is unlikely to be fined.
In the case of Inbi Park, as her due date for childbirth approaches, it is difficult for her to participate in competitions for the time being. Park In-bi, who has already been taking a break since the end of last year, will become a mother of one child in April. In addition, Ji Eun-hee, Jeon In-ji, and Kim Hyo-joo plan to start this season with plenty of time.
However, it is not only Korean players who are absent from this opening game. There was no locker room, which is essential for players, and caused a great backlash on the field.
U.S. media outlets such as Golf Week and Golf Channel reported that ahead of the opening, “The Lake Nona Golf Course, the site of the tournament, did not have a locker room for players.” It was also conveyed that the players were in trouble because there was no place to change clothes. The controversy has become an overseas topic in that it is an LPGA tour regular tournament that prides itself on being a first-class tour, and it is also the opening game. 스포츠토토
Of course, the organizers have nothing to say. Lake Nona Golf Course is in a situation where it is unable to operate the clubhouse normally as major facilities were damaged due to a hurricane that hit the Florida area in December of last year. When this fact became known, controversies spread as the players conversely voiced their voices toward the LPGA tour.
First of all, the players are using the temporarily prepared locker room during this tournament. Although the fire has calmed down like this, the awkward atmosphere from the opening day is still there.
Meanwhile, in the second round of the tournament, which ended on the 21st, Brooke Henderson took the lead with 11 under par and 133 strokes, sweeping 6 birdies without a bogey. Nellie Corda was then ranked second with a 7-under par alone.
In this tournament, not only LPGA tour players but also celebrities participate, and separate rankings are determined. In this ranking, which is determined by the modified Stable Ford method, Mardi Fish, a former tennis player, holds first place alone with 78 points, and LPGA Tour legend Annika Sorenstam still shows off her skills and tied for second place with 69 points.