Two of Asia’s top women golfers are aiming for gold at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics that is scheduled for next month.
Reigning US Women’s Open champion Chun In-Gee of South Korea, who defends her crown starting Thursday, and Thailand’s Ariya Jutanugarn cherished the chance to compete for their homelands in women’s golf’s return to the Olympic sporting lineup after being contested only in 1900.
“I can’t wait for Olympics because it’s going to be my first tournament play to represent Thailand,” world number seven Ariya told AFP. “I really want to play that tournament because I can represent Thailand and I’m really excited about that.”
At the age of just 11, Ariya qualified for the 2007 Honda LPGA Thailand, making her the youngest player ever to qualify for an LPGA Tour event.
She picked up a number of impressive victories as an amateur, including the 2011 United States Girls’ Junior Championship and 2012 Canadian Women’s Amateur. She clinched her first professional win in March 2013 when she was victorious in the LET’s Lalla Meryem Cup in Morocco.