New Delhi: Aditi Ashok and Tvesa Malik will be among the four golfers Indian who will fly the Indian flag for the second week in succession as the Aramco Saudi Ladies International golf tournament gets underway on Thursday. Aditi played a stunning round of 8-under 64 and finished T-6th, while Tvesa Malik was T-27th. Also featured in the field for one million euro inaugural event are Diksha Dagar and Astha Madan at the King Abdullah Economic City near Jeddah.
Moroccan professional golfer Maha Haddioui will make LET history, flying her country’s flag as the first Arabic woman to compete in Saudia Arabia at the inaugural Aramco Saudi Ladies International.
The presence of four Indian women golfers on a regular basis – they will also feature in next week’s event – indicates the growth of women’s golf in India, courtesy the strong domestic Hero Women’s PGA Tour and the more than decade old Hero Women’s Indian Open.
Aditi will be the first Indian to tee off alongside Nuria Iturrioz and Olivia Cowan at 7.23 am, while Astha Madan will play with Sarah Schober and Isabella Deilert from the first tee .
Diksha Dagar plays Lina Boqvist and Lydia Hall at 7.45 am but from 7.,45 am and Tvesa tees off with Gabriela Cowley and Luna Sobron Galmes at 11.43 am.
Legendary English golfer Dame Laura Davies is among the star names in the landmark women’s golf events. The four-time Major-winner will travel to King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC) in pursuit of an 86th professional title in a career that has seen her named Ladies European Tour Order Of Merit winner seven-times and represent Team Europe in 12 different Solheim Cups. She will be joined by Swedish two-time Major-winner Anna Nordqvist, as well as a host of other leading golfers.
Laura and Anna Nordquist apart, the field will include stellar names likes Trish Johnson, Esther Henseleit, Georgia Hall, Beth Allen, Charley Hull and Lee Ann Pace besides Becky Morgan, Emily Pedersen and Caroline Hedwall, all prominent winners on the LET.
The Royal Greens Golf & Country Club, which staged the first two men’s tournaments on the European Tour, will be hosting this event also. Haddioui, well-known on the LET as the first Arabic golfer to gain playing privileges after turning professional back in 2012, has enjoyed 101 starts, but this is the first start in Saudi Arabia.
The prize fund this week is the largest of the season, with 108 players competing for $1 million with a further $500,000 on offer next week at the inaugural Saudi Ladies Team International.