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Augusta National Announces Women's Event

The inaugural Augusta National Women's Amateur Championship will be played in 2019 (Photo: Getty Images)
Starting in 2019, 30 of the world’s top women amateurs will get the opportunity to play Augusta National the week before the Masters after club chairman Fred Ridley announced the launch of the Augusta National Women’s Amateur Championship overnight.

The 54-hole tournament will feature a field of 72 players with the opening two rounds to be played at nearby Champions Retreat Golf Club before a cut to the low 30 scores.

The final round will be played at Augusta National the Saturday before the Masters with the winner receiving exemption into both the US and British Women’s Opens.

“Bobby Jones and Clifford Roberts left behind a legacy of always trying to contribute meaningfully to the game of golf,” Ridley said in making the announcement.

“The Augusta National Women’s Amateur Championship embodies that principle, and we believe this event will have a significant and lasting impact on the future of the women’s game.

“Our hope and expectation is that this event will further energise those who already love the sport and inspire others through the dream of competing at Augusta National.” 

The 72-player field will be made up of winners of the U.S. Women’s Amateur, Ladies’ British Open Amateur Championship, Women’s Amateur Asia-Pacific, U.S. Girls’ Junior, Girls’ British Open Amateur Championship and Girls Junior PGA Championship.

The top 30 players from the United States of America, who are not otherwise qualified, based on the Women’s World Amateur Golf Ranking followed by the next 30 highest ranked players not otherwise qualified.

Remaining positions filled by invitation of the Augusta National Women’s Amateur Championship Committee.

While some have suggested the move is merely a token gesture it has been well received in most quarters with the Ladies European Tour among those giving the announcement the thumbs up.

USA Today columnist Christine Brennan was also impressed though former LPGA player Anya Alvarez was less so.

Video of Augusta National Chairman Fred Ridley making the announcement during his Wednesday press conference can be found here.

JORDAN SPIETH'S 'CHICKEN WING' AT IMPACT:

 

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