New pathways to the major tours in women’s golf and increased prizemoney are the highlights of WPGA Tour of Australasia’s schedule for the first half of 2024.
The 15 events will offer a total of $2.9 million and include two $500,000 tournaments co-sanctioned with the Ladies European Tour (LET) - the Women’s NSW Open at Magenta Shores Golf Club and the Australian Women’s Classic at the Bonville Golf Resort at Coffs Harbour.
WPGA Tour of Australasia CEO Karen Lunn said having the two co-sanctioned events, where the winners gain automatic LET membership if not already a member, would open up huge career possibilities for the WPGA players.
“It’s huge for our players to have two Australian events back on the Ladies European Tour,” she said.
“The possibilities those tournaments open up are enormous, particularly at a time when the LET is growing massively from year to year and the direct pathways the LET now has to the LPGA Tour.
“A victory in one of the two Australian events can set up your career.
“The opportunity will be there for our members to do what someone like Steph Kyriacou has done in recent years.
“She won the Australian Women’s Classic as an amateur, turned pro and played and then won on LET Tour and went on to qualify for the LPGA Tour.”
The WPGA Tour schedule also includes four innovative and exciting tournaments on Webex Players Series calendar in conjunction with the Challenger PGA Tour of Australasia.
The ground-breaking, mixed-gendered tournaments feature some of the country’s best women and men golfers competing against each other in the same field, on the same course, for the same purse.
Appearing on the schedule for the first time is the $140,000 World Sand Greens Championship which will complete the first half of the season.
Lunn said the expansion of the WPGA Tour of Australasia schedule to 15 tournaments was a positive step forward for the women’s game.
“With the expansion of the WPGA Tour season, the future of women’s golf is looking bright,” she said.
“Anytime we can provide further playing opportunities is a win not just for our elite athletes, but right through to the grassroots level of the game, inspiring young girls to chase their dreams on and off the fairway.”
With the second half of the season to once again feature five co-sanctioned Mixed Trust Golf Tour events, Lunn is looking forward to seeing more players competing on an international level.
“We are always on the lookout for new and innovative ways to build on our strong relationships with other Tours in our region.
“Following the success of the inaugural Thailand Mixed Trust Golf Tour events, we look forward to once again co-sanctioning these tournaments and announcing the dates in the coming months.”
The first half of the WPGA Tour of Australasia schedule is:
January 8-9: WPGA Qualifying Tournament at Coolangatta and Tweed Heads Golf Club
January 13-14: Melbourne International ($50,000) at Latrobe Golf Club, Melbourne
January 18-21: Webex Players Series Murray River in honour of Jarrod Lyle ($250,000) at Cobram Barooga Golf Club
January 25-28: Webex Players Series Victoria ($250,000) at Rosebud Country Club
January 31 – February 4: Vic Open ($420,000) at 13th Beach Golf Links
February 8-11: Webex Players Series Sydney ($250,000) at Castle Hill Country Club, Sydney
February 15-18: Webex Players Series Hunter Valley ($250,000) Cypress Lakes Golf & Country Club
February 24-25: The Athena TBC
February 29 – March 1: The Navigate Advisors Wagga Wagga Women’s Pro-am ($50,000) at Wagga Wagga Country Club
March 3-5: Women’s NSW Open Regional Qualifier ($50,000) at Duntryleague Golf Club, Orange
March 6-8: Women’s NSW Open Regional Qualifier ($50,000) at Bathurst Golf Club
March 10-12: Women’s NSW Open Regional Qualifier ($50,000) at Dubbo Golf Club
March 14-16: Women’s NSW Open Regional Qualifier ($50,000) at Narrabri Golf Club
March 29-31: Women’s NSW Open ($500,000) at Magenta Shores Golf Club
April 5-7: Australian Women’s Classic ($500,000) at Bonville Golf Resort, Coffs Harbour
April 10-11: World Sand Greens Championship ($140,000) at Walcha Golf Club