Australian and World Golf Hall of Fame member Karrie Webb will play in Canberra.
A stellar showcase of the world’s best golfers will descend on Australia’s capital city next summer for the 2013 ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open to be played from 14-17 February at Royal Canberra Golf Club.
The championship, which comes to Canberra for the first time in its history, is part of the 2013 Centenary of Canberra celebrations and will again be the season-opening event on the global LPGA Tour with prize money of US$1.2 million.
Headlining the early commitments to the event is four time champion and World Golf Hall of Fame member Australian Karrie Webb.
Webb has won 7 Major Championships and 38 times on the LPGA Tour over an illustrious career and is looking forward to teeing it up in Canberra.
In addition to the world’s best players, the International Sports Promotion Society (ISPS), through Dr Haruhisa Handa, will continue as the event’s naming rights sponsor.
ACT Chief Minister Katy Gallagher said the city was delighted to welcome the world’s best players to our nation’s capital.
“The Women’s Open coincides with an amazing year of sporting highlights in our Centenary year,” the Chief Minister said.
“It is fitting that the city of Canberra should play host to the world’s female golfing superstars - Canberra has produced many high profile female sportswomen and the Canberra community is a great supporter of women’s sport.
ISPS Chairman Dr Haruhisa Handa is delighted that ISPS is continuing their support of the championship and is excited by the steps that The ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open has taken on the international stage. ISPS is looking forward to an exciting week showcasing the best golf has to offer and continuing to build a global platform from which to raise the profile of blind and disabled golf.
ISPS’s ultimate goal is for golf to become a Paralympic Sport and has recently launched the ISPS HANDA Academy Programme in the UK which has pledged to train 100 PGA Professionals who will deliver 1,000 coaching sessions to blind and disabled golfers in 2012. The aim is for this programme to be rolled out around the world and provide the valuable and specialised coaching for all of those in need.
Golf Australia CEO Stephen Pitt said 2013 marked another major milestone for the ISPS Handa Women's Australian Open which has gone from strength to strength in recent years.
"Last year was a landmark year of success for the Women’s Open in moving on to the global stage with the LPGA Tour and we’re looking forward to our first visit to Canberra” Pitt said.
“ISPS is now in its third consecutive year as title sponsor and their support has had an exceptional impact on both the tournament and women’s golf in Australia. We are delighted to be part of Canberra’s Centenary events and appreciate their desire to see the championship grow and Golf Australia is looking forward to supporting ISPS in their mission for golf to become a Paralympic Sport,” Pitt said.
“This championship has prided itself in recent years in bringing the best players in the world to Australia and 2013 will continue that trend. We look forward to welcoming the international stars back to Australia and to having our four-time champion Karrie back with us again," Pitt said.
ABC TV will again broadcast comprehensive coverage of the championship across all four days.
Tickets are now on sale at Ticketek at www.ticketek.com or via calling 132 849.