The internationals have taken the limelight at the Australian Ladies Classic Bonville, but there’s a host of Aussies capable of the lifting the inaugural trophy on Sunday evening. Let’s meet them.
The 22-year-old has been described as the hottest talent in women’s golf in Australia, having broken into the world’s top 100 players in the past year.
The West Australian finished third in the Australian Open earlier this month and is already close to securing her LPGA card in America after just two events. She has started 2018 in a blaze, finishing with a pair of T-11 finishes in her first two starts.
Her earnings from those two events have already topped her entire earnings from the secondary Symetra Tour where she had 20 starts.
Here at Bonville, Green has scored 11 birdies in the opening two rounds to go with seven bogeys. Yesterday she three-putted four times, and is still T-5. If she gets her putter going, she’ll be hard to stop.
The Burleigh-based 29-year-old will finally start on the LPGA this year after eight seasons on the Ladies European Tour. But if she’s feeling nervous, it doesn’t show.
“I’m an LPGA rookie, not a tour rookie,” she told Brisbane’s The Courier-Mail.
“So hopefully that holds me in good stead for a good start in Phoenix.”
The Queenslander has managed 10 birdies in her opening 36 holes at Bonville, and kept bogeys to a minimum, testament to her experience and patience on this challenging course.
She will be among eight Australians on the LPGA this year, and she is knee-deep in this tournament. Having given up a comfortable life on the LET for this career change – don’t be surprised if it’s spectacularly successful.
With 11 career wins, Sarah Kemp has the experience and maturity to seriously contend here at Bonville this weekend. If she wins, it will be the biggest win of her career.
The Sydneysider turned pro in 2005, and at the age of 32 should be enjoying the prime of her career right now. A winner of several pro-am events throughout her 12-year career, the missing piece is a big win on either the LPGA or LET.
She will play LET and has conditional status on the LPGA but was just as excited to be playing high-profile events in her home state where “I get to drive my own car to a tour event”.
Currently sitting in 18th in Bonville with consistent, steady golf, this could be the weekend that changes everything.
The 22-year-old from northern NSW has a Go Fund Me page calling for donations to support her dream of playing professional golf, with the goal in 2019 of competing in the JLPGA tour school.
“I purely rely on my own savings, working part time on a passionfruit farm, however I believe working another job outside of golf would take away precious time I could devote to improving my game,” she writes.
Of the $10,000 target, an anonymous donor provided $3000, which is phenomenal given the few results posted in the early stages of her career.
Here at Bonville, the Murwillumbah local started her third round inside the top 30. If she pulls off the unthinkable here, it will be a life changer.
And that Go Fund Me page might not be needed after all.
Doey Choi (A)
She might have one of the coolest names on tour, but 18-year-old from Concord Sydney already has the credibility to make a career in the game. A former winner of the NSW Woman’s Amateur Championship (2014) and Qld Women’s Strokeplay Champion (2015) it’s only a matter of time before she announces her arrival in a big way.
It might be here if her trajectory stays the way it is going. With opening rounds of 75 and 72 anything under par today will create a lot of noise.
Stephanie Bunque (A)
The Victorian is certainly a fast learner. Opening with a 77, she quickly learned how to manage the Bonville Resort course, coming back on Friday with a three-under round of 69 to be well inside the cut-line and a strong chance to rise up the leaderboard.
The 20-year-old won the Vic Amateur in December 2017 with a 5-4 win against Grace Kim from NSW, at the time ranked number 3 in Australia. A strong showing here will generate plenty of interest.