2012 Espirito Santo Trophy – Storylines
RECORD NUMBER OF TEAMS – A record 53 teams are competing in the 25th Women’s World Amateur Team Championship, surpassing the previous record of 52 teams in Argentina in 2010.
FIRST-TIME PARTICIPANTS – Seven countries are making their first appearances in the Women’s World Amateur Team Championship in Turkey. Bosnia and Herzegovina, Estonia, India, Poland, Serbia, Tunisia and Ukraine.
DEFENDING CHAMPION – Korea is vying to become the first team to win back-to-back WWATC titles since the USA won in 1988 and 1990.
HOST NATION – Turkey is playing in its fourth Women’s World Amateur Team Championship. Its best finish was 41st in 2004 in Puerto Rico.
McCORMACK MEDAL WINNER – New Zealand’s Lydia Ko, 15, is the winner of the Mark H. McCormack medal for 2012, for holding the No.1 position in the World Amateur Golf Ranking at the conclusion of the ranking period. She also won the award in 2011 as a 14-year-old. She has enjoyed a terrific summer, winning the 2012 U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship and the Canadian Women’s Open on the LPGA Tour. She also won the 2012 New South Wales Open of the Australian LPGA Tour and was the low amateur at the 2012 U.S. Women’s Open and the 2012 Women’s British Open. Ko played in the 2010 WWATC as a 13-year-old and shot 69 in the second round.
WOMEN’S WORLD AMATEUR GOLF RANKING (Members of the Top 20 playing in WWATC)
Week of Sept. 16
1 — Lydia Ko (NZL)
3 — Hyo Joo Kim (KOR)
4 — Georgia Hall (ENG)
6 — Minjee Lee (AUS)
9 — Charley Hull (ENG)
10 — Breanna Elliott (AUS)
12 — Kim Williams (RSA)
13 — Stephanie Meadow (IRL)
15 — Nicole Broch Larsen (DEN)
17 – Celine Boutier (FRA)
19 — Perrine Delacour (FRA)
TEXAS STATE AND THE WORLD AMATEUR – Four members of the eight-player roster of the Texas State University women’s golf team in the USA will be playing in the 2012 WWATC. Sisters Krista and Mara Puisite, ages 21 and 20, respectively, will represent Latvia together for the third time as both competed in 2008 and 2010. Malaysia’s Iman Nordin and Iceland’s Valdis Jonsdottir will also represent their countries in Turkey.
USA WOMEN’S NCAA TEAM CHAMPIONS – The University of Alabama’s 2012 National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I championship team is represented at the championship by Jennifer Kirby, 21, of Canada, and Stephanie Meadow, 20, of Ireland.
CURTIS CUP 2012 – Great Britain and Ireland won the 2012 Curtis Cup Match in June at Nairn Golf Club in Scotland, the first time that side had claimed victory since 1996. Leona McGuire and Stephanie Meadow of Ireland, Charley Hull of England and Amy Boulden of Wales represented Great Britain and Ireland in its 10.5-9.5 win over the United States of America. The two USA players in the Women’s World Amateur Team Championship are Austin Ernst and Lisa McCloskey.
YOUNGEST AND OLDEST – At 13 years old, Yumi Matsubara of Japan is believed to be the youngest contestant because not all biographical data has been collected. She won the Japan Junior (age 12-14) and High School championships in 2012. She is just 11 days younger than Xinying Wang of the People’s Republic of China. Wang made the Chinese national golf team at age 12 in 2011. Tessie Blair, 57 of Guam, who is playing in her second Espirito Santo competition, is the oldest player.
2012 LADIES TURKISH AMATEUR OPEN – Danish team member Nicole Broch Larsen, 19, won the 2012 Turkish Amateur Open on May 31 at Gloria Golf Club’s New Course. She won by five strokes with a 4-under-par 284 that included a tournament-low 68 in the third round. She also won the 2011 title. Other Women’s World Amateur Team Championship participants who finished in the top 10 are: Japan’s Kotone Hori and France’s Celine Boutier (T3) and Austria’s Sarah Schober and Germany’s Nina Holleder (T7).
Storylines – Alphabetical By Country
Maria Olivera, 38, is playing in her 11th Women’s World Amateur Team Championship in Turkey. Only two players in the history of the championship – Elisabeth Nickhorn of Brazil (13) and Marina Ragher Buscaini (12) of Italy – have more appearances. Her first appearance was in 1990 in New Zealand. She won the South American Championship in 2009.
High school student Minjee Lee, 16, won the 2012 U.S. Girls’ Junior Championship in California (USA) in July.
The World Amateur Team Championships in 2010 provided Chloe Leurquin, 22, her most memorable golf moment as she scored a hole-in-one on the par-3 17th hole of Olivos G.C. in the fourth round. She has six other career holes-in-one.
BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA
Lamija Cehajic , 24, is fascinated with the Mediterranean Sea so she should enjoy the visit to Turkey since Gloria Golf Club and the championship hotels are close to that body of water. She speaks seven languages.
Brooke Henderson, 15, won the 2012 CN Women’s Tour event in Quebec in June and also captured the Canadian Junior Girls title this summer.
Augusta James’ birthday is April 8, 1993 and that’s why she’s named for the major championship played in that month. The 19-year-old was born on the first day of the 1993 Masters Tournament.
Captain Felipe Harker is participating in his 12th World Amateur Team Championship. He was a five-time participant as a player and has been Colombia’s captain for seven championships (all since 2000). He is an orthopedic physician and the executive director of the Colombian Golf Federation.
Captain Lynn Booth is a chartered physiotherapist and served as the clinical lead for the physical therapy service at the 2012 London Olympic Games and Paralympic Games.
Nina Holleder, 24, has one career double eagle and it is truly memorable because it came at the Old Course at St. Andrews in a round that she finished in six under par.
Aditi Ashok, 14, of India won the 2011 All India Ladies Amateur and her teammate Gurbani Singh won the All India Ladies Amateur Championship in 2009 at the age of 13 Years 3 months and 15 days.
Captain Anna Molinari, who played for Italy in 2010 at the WWATC, is married to a member of
Europe’s victorious 2010 Ryder Cup team – Edoardo Molinari. Her husband played for Italy in the 1998, 2000, 2002 and 2004 World Amateur Team Championships and won the 2005 U.S. Amateur Championship. They were married in April 2012. Her brother-in-law, Francesco Molinari, will represent Europe at the 2012 Ryder Cup, which runs concurrently with the Espirito Santo Trophy competition (Sept.28-30).
Captain Santa Puce played for the Latvian National ice hockey team.
This is the only team to have the same trio as at the 2010 championship –Patricia Garcia, Kyle Roig and Maria Torres. They finished T30. Garcia and Roig, both 19, are playing in their fourth WWATC. Roig’s most memorable moment is winning the 2010 Harder Hall Invitational in the USA in a playoff over current LGPA Tour player Lexi Thompson.
Sally Watson, 21, attends Stanford University in the USA and is studying international relations. Her academic advisor is former USA secretary of state Condoleezza Rice, who was recently named one of the first female members at Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Ga., USA, home of the Masters Tournament. She is playing in her second WWATC and represented Great Britain and Ireland at the 2008 and 2010 Curtis Cup Matches.
Sisters Ariana and Milena Savich, 20 and 22, respectively, will represent their country. Milena plays college golf at the University of Georgia in the USA and Ariana plays for the University of Missouri. Their father, Rade, played American college football at Central Michigan University.
Captain Virada Nirapathpongporn, 30, was a four-time All-American while playing golf at Duke University. The former LGPA Tour golfer was the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s Division I women’s individual champion in 2002 and won the 2003 U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship.
Lisa McCloskey, 21, is playing in her second WWATC and for her second country. She was born in Bogota, Colombia – her mother is Colombian and her father is American — and played for that country in the 2010 Espirito Santo competition. She represented the USA at the 2012 Curtis Cup Match.
Captain Carol Semple Thompson is a member of the World Golf Hall of Fame (2008) and played in five Espirito Santo competitions, four of which were USA victories: 1974, 1980, 1988, and 1994. She also competed in 1992. She is a seven-time USGA champion. Her most memorable moment in golf was winning the 1973 U.S. Women’s Amateur and having the trophy presented to her by her father, who was the USGA vice president at the time. Both of her parents served as captains of winning USA teams at the World Amateur Team Championships – her father (Harton Semple) captained the winning USA men’s team in 1978 in Fiji and her mother, Phyllis, was the USA women’s captain in the team’s 1976 victory.