For all the hype and media furore that often surrounds men’s golf, the quality of the women’s game and women’s golfers mustn’t be forgotten either.
Like all sports, the pandemic has played havoc with women’s golf. However, the future has arguably never looked brighter as we enter the 2022 season.
Right now, the 2022 golfing calendar looks strong with more than 30 tournaments underpinned by the Aramco Series and the two Major Championships scheduled for Europe (The Evian in France and the Women’s British Open, which is being played at Muirfield, Edinburgh, in August.
As well as this, the Ladies European Tour, in particular, has benefited enormously from the success of last year’s Solheim Cup team, which won on American soil for only the second time in the event’s history.
We sat down with eight-times Ryder Cup player, three-times Ryder Cup captain, and Golf Care ambassador Bernard Gallacher to chat about which women’s golfers he’s tipping for success in 2022.
Here’s what he had to say…
9 women golfers to look out for in 2022: Bernard’s picks
1. Nelly Korda
Korda is currently ranked number one in the world (at the time of writing). At just 23 years old (at the beginning of the year), the daughter of Grand Slam tennis winner Petr Korda has already won an impressive seven tournaments in America. These include last year’s Women’s PGA Championship and the Olympic gold medal in Japan.
2. Leona Maguire
Irish superstar and former amateur number one golfer for a record 135 weeks, Maguire turned professional in 2018 and has impressed ever since. Most recently, she was a standout performer in the 2021 European Solheim Cup team. Her superb temperament and excellent technique make her one to watch this year for sure.
3. Jin Young Ko
Hailing from South Korea, Young Ko is ranked number two in the world (at the time of writing). She won the LPGA Golfer of the Year Award two years in a row in 2019 and 2020 and was the leading money winner in both plus in 2021, too. Young Ko has won 12 LPGA tournaments, including two majors to date. She’s an outstanding talent and certainly the one to beat in 2022.
4. Anna Nordqvist
Nordqvist is a quick, ‘no-nonsense’ type of player with an admirable technique. She currently plays on both the LPGA and European Ladies Tour. Nordqvist has won a total of nine tournaments in America, four in Europe and also has three majors to her name. One of her three majors successes came at the 2021 Women’s British Open at Carnoustie.
5. Lexi Thompson
A stalwart on the LPGA since first turning professional in 2015, Thompson is one of the most decorated women golfers. To date, she has 11 career wins under her belt, including one major. Her long hitting and dependable putting ability make her an exciting player to watch for sure. Interestingly, her two brothers, Nicholas and Curtis, are golfers, too. It must run in the family!
6. Georgia Hall
English star Hall has been playing professional golf since 2014 after a hugely successful amateur career. She currently plays on both the European Ladies Tour and the LPGA – the latter of which she has won twice. Known for her consistency, Hall won the Women’s British Open at Royal Lytham in 2018 and appeared on the European Tour Order of Merit in the same year and in 2017.
7. Charley Hull
Hull represents Woburn on both the European Ladies Tour and LPGA Tour, winning three times in Europe and once in America. In 2014, she became the first-ever golfer under the age of 18 to win the Ladies European Order of Merit. Hull is an excellent player to watch with an excellent swing – it can only be a matter of time before she wins a major.
8. Inbee Park
Another South Korean golfer on our list and my favourite women’s golfer, Park has dominated the LPGA Tour at times, bagging 21 wins since first turning professional in 2007. She’s also won three times in Europe, four in Japan and once in her native South Korea. If that wasn’t enough – she’s also won seven majors to date. Small in stature she might be at just 5’6’’, she’s not long off the tee, but an imperiously straight, superb putter with and the best tour temperament I’ve seen, female and male golfers included. The 33-year-old is totally calm under pressure and has many more career wins to come for sure. Remember the name.
9. Lydia Ko
New Zealander Ko is a real golfing prodigy. She was already a superstar on the LPGA Tour before she’d even turned 18, and to date, she remains the youngest player to win a Pro event and the youngest player to win an LPGA tournament. Ko is also the youngest player (women or men) to be crowned world number one. Still only 24 years old (at the beginning of 2022), she’s won 16 Tournaments on the LPGA and six on the Ladies European Tour, including two majors. After a slight dip in form, Ko returned to winning ways strongly in Hawaii in 2021. She also currently lies third in the Rolex Ladies World Rankings – definitely one to watch and look out for in 2022.
Many thanks to Bernard for sharing his favourite women’s golfers in 2022. Who are you backing on the fairway this year?
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