NEW YORK – Japanese teenage golfer Ai Miyazato will play in the inaugural Women’s World Matchplay Championship to be held in the United States this summer as a sponsor’s exemption, organizers said Monday.
Miyazato is one of two sponsors’ exemptions to the June 30-July 3 tournament at Hamilton Farm Golf Club in Gladstone, N.J., which will also feature the top 60 players on the U.S. LPGA money list as of May 22 and the leader of the Japan LPGA money rankings.
The winner will earn $500,000 out of a $2 million purse.
The 19-year-old Miyazato won five tournaments in 2004 in her first full year on the JLPGA Tour and captured the inaugural Women’s World Cup with Japan teammate Rui Kitada in South Africa in February.
She is scheduled to play in the U.S. Women’s Open at Cherry Hills Country Club in Colorado, one week before the World Matchplay Championship.
From course to court
SYDNEY (AP) A day after his best finish as a pro golfer, Scott Draper returned to the tennis court for what may be his final season.
Draper had a Top-10 finish in the South Australian PGA Championship at Adelaide on Sunday. Despite winning the Australian Open mixed doubles in January with fellow-Australian Samantha Stosur, Draper expects this to be his final tennis season because of persistent knee injuries.
His tennis itinerary includes the French Open, Queen’s Club — which he won in 1998 — Wimbledon, World Team Tennis and the U.S. Open.
The 30-year-old Draper earned his Australasian PGA Tour card last December. This summer, he expects to play in some Monday qualifying events on the PGA Tour.
“I’m going to try to finish off tennis to the best of my ability and see what happens in the future with golf,” Draper said.
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