LPGA returns to Australia at Royal Melbourne Golf Club beginning in 2012 with the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open
Golf Australia announces LPGA, ALPG to co-sanction US$1.1 million event
DAYTONA BEACH, FLORIDA, Oct. 26, 2011 – Golf Australia, in conjunction with the LPGA (Ladies Professional Golf Association) and the ALPG (Australian Ladies Professional Golf), announced today that the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open will be added to the LPGA Tour schedule beginning in 2012. The 2012 ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open will take place the week of Feb. 6-12 at Royal Melbourne Golf Club, host of the upcoming 2011 Presidents Cup, beginning a three-week LPGA swing through the Asia-Pacific region that will include stops at the Honda LPGA Thailand and the HSBC Women’s Champions in Singapore.
“All credit goes to Golf Australia for their consistent vision to bring the LPGA Tour to Australia,” said LPGA Commissioner Michael Whan. “The LPGA is delighted to partner with Golf Australia to showcase some of the greatest golfers in the world in one of the greatest locations in world – the famous Melbourne Sandbelt — and at one of the most respected golf venues in the world – Royal Melbourne. The combination of spectacular city, top-notch venue, and terrific fans make this event a perfect start to our global spring swing. The ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open works perfectly for our 2012 LPGA Tour schedule as Australia will lead right into the Honda LPGA Thailand and HSBC Women’s Champions in Singapore.”
The 2012 ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open will be a full field event with players battling for a US$1.1 million purse in a four-day, 72-hole stroke-play competition that will be televised in the U.S. by Golf Channel and in Australia by ABC. In 2013, the event will be hosted by Royal Canberra Golf Club.
Victorian Tourism and Major Events Minister Louise Asher said the Victorian Government through the Victorian Major Events Company had worked hard to secure the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open in Melbourne in 2012, 2014 and 2015.
“With the 2012 Open now joining the LPGA Tour, this event will attract more competitors and greater media and branding exposure,” Ms. Asher said.
“Being a part of the LPGA Tour means Melbourne will see an exceptional international field with Golf Australia expecting in excess of 120 international players to compete in Melbourne on the LPGA Tour.”
“There will be greater international media exposure for Australia’s premier sporting events city. According to the LPGA, the Open will be broadcast into more than 240 million households in 171 countries, exposing our fantastic events and sporting city of Melbourne to thousands of potential tourists and golf fans.”
Considered the most prestigious golf club in Australia, Royal Melbourne Golf Club is the oldest club in continuous use on the continent dating back to 1891. Royal Melbourne has played host to numerous world class golf events including the Canada Cup, World Cup, Australian Opens, Heineken Classics and two Presidents Cup events including the 1998 edition – the first to be played outside the United States – and the upcoming 2011 edition
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