Creation of Singapore Women’s Open Hailed

Koh Sock Hwee is relishing playing in the first Singapore Women’s Open. Picture by Singapore Golf Association.

Singapore: The creation of the Hana Financial Group Singapore Women’s Open (SWO) has been hailed as an important and positive development for women’s golf in Singapore.

Koh Sock Hwee, the highest-ranked Singaporean on the Women’s World Golf Rankings, is relishing the prospect of teeing off in her first national Open from December 9-11 in front of a home crowd at the Tanah Merah Country Club, a Facility Member of the Asian Golf Industry Federation.

“It’s an honour to play in our very own national women’s Open – the first time we’ve ever had one. It will definitely open the doors to more young female golfers picking up the sport because they now have a goal to work towards – to play in their own national Open,” said Koh.

On setting targets and goals for the event, which will also serve as curtain-raiser to the Korea Ladies Professional Golf Association (KLPGA) Tour’s 2023 season, Koh said: “Being a KLPGA event, it is going to be a strong field and I can’t wait to test my skills among them. The most immediate goal would be to make the cut, and then get my best-ever finish at a KLPGA event.

Aloysa Atienza, 24, the reigning Southeast Asian (SEA) Games individual silver medallist, has also welcomed the staging of the national women’s Open.

She said: “The last few years, we’ve had an LPGA Tour event here and there’s always a lot of the junior girls coming down to watch. Having the SWO gives these girls another event to watch and be inspired, rather than just seeing them on TV.

“It’s a different experience. I’m fortunate to have earned my spot this year and I’m sure it will also drive the top female golfers in Singapore to get better in order to get a spot in future editions.” 

As for her own expectations, Atienza, who is 330th on the World Amateur Golf Ranking, said: “Getting a rare start on the KLPGA Tour as an amateur is a big opportunity. Playing it on home soil makes it even more exciting because my friends and family can come down to watch me play.

“I hope that I don’t get too nervous and just play my game. Making the cut would be a small win for me, but I just want to see how high up the leaderboard I can climb for the week.”

Meanwhile, Tan Chong Huat, President of the Singapore Golf Association (SGA) has challenged the local players to capitalise on the opportunity to showcase their talent at the S$1.1 million tournament.

He believes the players’ local knowledge of the Tanah Merah Country Club will be one of their main strengths.

Tan said: “It is a huge opportunity for the Singaporean players as they are all familiar with the TMCC Tampines Course, having trained and competed there in amateur events.

“More importantly, they will gain tremendous experience from competing at a major event with the best players in the world.

“It is a milestone event for women’s golf in Singapore as we will have our top Singaporean professional and amateur golfers competing with the top ladies professionals in the world.

“Apart from the elite players, this event will also generate the interest of the wider community and boost the development of golf in Singapore.”

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AGIF is a not for profit industry federation with members and partners involved in all facets of the golf industry throughout Asia to assist them to take the next step in development toward a sustainable industry.


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