Crowd favourite Michelle Wie is coming to Adelaide.
The 27-year-old American will tee it up in the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open, 16-19 February, marking her first visit to play the event since 2013 at Royal Canberra.
After an injury-plagued 2016 season, Wie is excited that Royal Adelaide will be a key stepping stone back to the form that enabled her to win the 2014 Women’s U.S. Open.
“It’s tremendous to come back to Australia, I can’t believe it’s been four years since I was last there in Canberra,” Wie said.
“Royal Adelaide is obviously a course known around the world and the girls spoke so highly of South Australia last year that I can’t wait to see not only the club, but everything going on around the state, too.
“I’m really excited about what the season ahead will hold for me and I’m hopeful that Adelaide will put me on the right track to a successful year.”
Tournament director Trevor Herden said Wie’s commitment to the Open was a real coup for South Australia.
“Michelle is a huge drawcard, a player you just have to watch – she’s instantly recognisable and has a great rapport with her fans,” he said.
“She’s done so many things – such as breaking age records and playing on the PGA Tour – that people tend to overlook her outstanding LPGA Tour resume.
“Michelle has won the US Open, but also finished second twice in other majors, third in three more and has a total of 11 major top-10s – it’s an imposing record.
“It’s no wonder people flock to see her play and she’ll add a lot of `wow factor’ to the week at Royal Adelaide.”
Wie joins a field already containing world No.1 Lydia Ko, world No.2 Ariya Jutanugarn, world No.8 Brooke Henderson, defending champion Haru Nomura and top-ranked Australian trio Minjee Lee, five-time champ Karrie Webb and Su Oh.
Minister for Tourism Leon Bignell said fans still had time to secure their tickets and see the stellar line-up in action.
“We’re delighted Michelle Wie has joined the field for this year’s ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open, and that the event will be held at Royal Adelaide as it celebrates 125 years,” Mr Bignell said.
“This renowned course is a perfect match for the incredible group of players on their way to compete in South Australia. We know everyone will be intent on starting the season well.
“Along with all the excitement of the tournament, fans can enjoy our fantastic food and wine, beautiful beaches, native wildlife and Adelaide’s summer buzz during their time here. There’s so much to do and it’s all within easy reach.”
Tickets are available on line via www.womensausopen.com/ticketing with the event to run from 16-19 February as RAGC celebrates its 125th anniversary.
The ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open is one of a series of world-class events in South Australia. The summer calendar — including everything from the Santos Tour Down Under and Clipsal 500 Adelaide to the Fringe, Adelaide Festival and WOMADelaide — is especially popular. South Australia was named Best Events State at the 2016 Australian Event Awards, the second year running it has won the accolade.