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Opportunity knocks for Leona Maguire as historic first women's tournament set for Augusta

Augusta National announced the establishment of the Women’s Amateur Championship from 2019.

Leona Maguire could be among the contenders for the first Augusta National Women’s Amateur Championship.
Leona Maguire could be among the contenders for the first Augusta National Women’s Amateur Championship.
Image: James Crombie/INPHO

Updated Apr 4th 2018, 5:00 PM

JUST SIX YEARS after allowing women become members for the first time, the Augusta National Golf Club today announced a new competition and Ireland’s Leona Maguire will be undoubtedly be among the favourites for the top prize.

The new event — the Augusta National Women’s Amateur Championship — will see the best 72 players in the world take part, with the first two rounds taking place at the Champions Retreat Golf Club in Augusta.

The final round, featuring the top-30 players, will take place at Augusta National on the Saturday before the Masters gets under way in 2019.

Maguire, currently ranked second in the world, is one of the best amateur players in the game and, last November, was named the Global Golf Post Female Amateur of the Year.

That award was in addition to receiving the Mark H. McCormack Medal as the top golfer in the Women’s World Amateur Golf Ranking for the third consecutive year and taking home the 2017 Ladies’ British Open Amateur Championship.

The Cavan native has given no indication she plans to turn professional any time soon.

“Bobby Jones and Clifford Roberts left behind a legacy of always trying to contribute meaningfully to the game of golf,” Fred Ridley, chairman of Augusta National Golf Club and the Masters said today.

“The Augusta National Women’s Amateur Championship embodies that principle, and we believe this event will have a significant and lasting impact on the future of the women’s game.

“Our hope and expectation is that this event will further energise those who already love the sport and inspire others through the dream of competing at Augusta National.”

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Steve O'Rourke

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