Women’s Indian Open from Oct 20; Star golfers to vie for $400,000 prize money

New Delhi, Sep 22 (IANS) A strong field of past champions and current winners from the Ladies European Tour (LET) are confirmed for the Hero Women’s Indian Open 2022, which returns to action for the first time since 2019.

With a prize purse of US$ 400,000, the event will be staged at the picturesque DLF Golf and Country Club in Gurugram from October 20-23.

The event, which could not be held in 2020 and 2021 because of the Coronavirus pandemic, is coming back with one of the strongest fields in its history.

At least five past champions have already sent in their entries and more are likely to come through. Additionally, a host of winners in the 2021 and 2022 seasons have entered the event, which will see participation of 114 golfers from as many as 20 countries from around the world.

The field also includes Aditi Ashok, India’s first and only Women’s Indian Open winner, who has since graduated to the LPGA. Aditi represented India with great distinction at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics in 2021, where she lost out on a medal by a solitary stroke. She holds the Women’s Indian Open dear to her heart, as it is an event she has played since her amateur days.

The US$400,000 event comes at the business end of the season and offers a chance to many players to secure their status for 2023 or improve their ranking ahead of the next season.

All the top Indians led by Aditi have confirmed their participation. The line-up includes Tvesa Malik, who was 19th on the Ladies European Tour Order of Merit last season; Diksha Dagar, the 2019 South African Open Champion and 2022 Deaflympics gold medallist, Amandeep Drall and Vani Kapoor. Other prominent Indian names expected in action are Ridhima Dilawari, Gaurika Bishnoi and Neha Tripathi.

Hero MotoCorp, Chairman & CEO, Pawan Munjal, said, “The Hero Women’s Indian Open, a flagship event in Asia, is one of the biggest and most popular golf tournaments in the region. We are delighted to be back, and I am pleased to know that some of the most talented names on the Tour will be here in India. Our Indian women golfers are making rapid strides with some great performances in the International Tours. This will be one of the most exciting editions of Hero Women’s Indian Open. I would like to thank the Ladies European Tour and the Women’s Golf Association of India for their continued support of the event.”

Among the former Champions who have sent in their early entries is the defending Champion from 2019, Christine Wolf; 2018 winner Becky Morgan; 2017 winner Camille Chevalier; 2016 Champion Aditi Ashok and 2011 winner Caroline Hedwall.

The field is replete with winners from the 2022 season, including one of the most successful stars this season, Linn Grant, who has won four times on the Ladies European Tour and three times on the Sunshine Tour in South Africa.

Other winners of 2022 include Anne Charlotte Mora (Aaland 100 Ladies Open 2022), Tiia Kovisto (Jabra Ladies Open), Ana Pelaez (Madrid Ladies Open) and Meghan Maclaren (Australian Ladies Classic — Bonville).

Indian women’s golf, which has been on an upswing over the past few years, has seen the rise of young stars like Pranavi Urs, who has won five times in 12 domestic events, and other names such as Hitaashee Bakshi, Jahnavi Bakshi, Seher Atwal and Sneha Singh will keep the home fans enthralled.

Kavita Singh, President of the Women’s Golf Association of India said, “It is indeed gratifying that we stand today at the threshold of staging yet another edition of the Hero Women’s Indian Open. With the challenges that the world has faced over the past two and a half years, it is indeed a relief to see that the worst is behind us. The WGAI is looking forward to welcoming the players and officials from the LET once again.”

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