KUALA LUMPUR: Ainil Johani Bakar and Aretha Pan will join amateurs Cindy Lee-Pridgen and Michelle Koh – the winner and runner-up respectively from the local qualifying tournament – as sponsors’ exemptions in the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia, which starts at the Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club (KLGCC) on Thursday.
They will be joined by the two regional winners – Chang Yu-shin Chang and Chien Pei-yun, both of Taiwan.
The other four exemptions have been given to Carly Booth of Scotland, Japan’s Mamiko Higa, China’s Shi Yuting and England’s Charley Hull.
“Ainil and Aretha will be given sponsors’ exemptions and will get the chance to play against the best women golfers. It’s a pity Jean Chua is unable to feature this year as she is playing in the Q-School, trying to get a Tour card for next year,” said Tan Sri Dr M. Jegathesan, the governing council member of Sime Darby Foundation.
“Golf fans in Malaysia can look forward to yet another showcase competition here at the KLGCC, which we are confident will continue to play a valuable role in the development of the game in Malaysia while raising much needed funds for our charitable partners at Carif (Cancer Research Initiatives Foundation).
“We are very grateful to all the players, the LPGA Tour, the tournament organisers and staff of the KLGCC for all their hard work and preparation ahead of this year’s competition.”
LPGA commissioner Michael Whan said that having a world class field would add glamour to the Malaysian edition and hopefully draw in the fans.
“The very best golfers in the world are here to showcase their skills and I’m confident the spectators will be in for a treat this week. This is certainly the strongest field assembled for this fantastic event and there will be plenty of exciting action in store for all golf fans,” he said.
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