The Women’s Amateur Asia-Pacific championship was created by The R&A and Asia-Pacific Golf Confederation to provide a platform to unearth the best elite, young talent in the region shaping the future for Asia’s female amateurs to make their mark on the international stage.
No one could have foreseen that only three years later, two of the players in the inaugural event at Sentosa would have gone on to Major Championship success creating an amazing legacy.
In March this year, 21-year-old Patty Tavatanakit (Thailand) stunned the golfing world with a wire-to-wire victory at the ANA Inspiration with a display of power and precision to win the first Major of the year – her average drive for the week was an impressive 326 yards.
In June 19-year-old Yuka Saso (Philippines) won the US Women’s Open in a play-off to become the first Philippine male or female to win a Major. Saso was also in a play-off at the inaugural Women’s Amateur Asia-Pacific in 2018 won by Atthaya Thitikul (Thailand).
Saso and Tavatanakit have already ascended to ninth and 13th respectively in the Rolex Women’s World Golf Rankings.
Multiple Pro Wins
The international success of the players from the first two championships does not stop there – Thitikul won five times last year on the AllThailand Golf Tour and finished second in her first start on the LPGA as a professional at the Honda LPGA Thailand. Atthaya also currently leads the Ladies European Tour Money List with 9 top 10 finishes and one win from 11 tournaments in 2021.
In 2019, Yuka Yusada won the second championship at The Royal Golf Club in Japan ascending to fifth on the World Amateur Golf Ranking ® (WAGR ®) before starting a successful professional career. Amazingly her compatriots, Mone Inami (T18 2018) and Ayaka Furue (T11 2018 and T7 2019) have already won eight times on the Japan LPGA between them with Inami winning five titles so far in 2021 - both are currently ranked inside the top-30 of the Rolex Women’s World Golf Rankings.
Three former WAAP players Tavatanakit (Thailand), Saso (Philippines) and Inami (Japan) represented and competed for their home country at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, with Inami delivering the golf-loving host nation a silver medal in a play-off with New Zealand’s Lydia Ko.
The R&A is supported by championship event partners that share its commitment to developing golf in the Asia- Pacific. The Women’s Amateur Asia-Pacific championship is proudly supported by Rolex, Nippon Kabaya Ohayo Holdings, Samsung, Trust Golf and Hana Financial Group.
The 2021 Women’s Amateur Asia-Pacific championship will be staged at the Abu Dhabi Golf Club in the United Arab Emirates from 10-13 November.