Date: February 17, 2015
Author: Martin Blake

Pairings: Ko tees off Thursday with Ryu, Hull


Tournament favourite and world No. 1 Lydia Ko will play with major winner So Yeon Ryu and Europe's top player Charley Hull when the ISPS Handa Women's Australian Open tees off on Thursday.

Ko, 17, the youngest-ever world No. 1 in either men's or women's golf, tees off at 12.50pm Thursday.

Ryu, the world No. 7, won the 2011 United States Open and is one of the most consistent players on the LPGA. Hull, 18, won the money list in Europe last year and is one of the most talented young golfers in the world.

Five-time winner Karrie Webb is teeing off on Thursday morning at 7.50am with 2012 Open winner Jessica Korda and world No. 4 Shanshan Feng, who is playing her first Australian Open.

Tournament director Trevor Herden described Royal Melbourne's composite course as "pristine'', and estimated that eight or nine-under par would win the tournament.

The course is playing almost 200 metres longer than what it was in 2012 because some tees have been put back. On that occasion, Korda won a six-woman playoff with a three-under-par score.

The greens will be targeted at an 11.2 stimpmeter reading this week.


10th tee- AM

7.40 Su Oh (Aust), Katherine Kirk (Aust), Ariya Jutanugarn (Thailand)

7.50 Karrie Webb (Aust), Jessica Korda (USA), Shanshan Feng (China)

8.00 Yani Tseng (Taipei), Gerina Piller (USA), Ai Miyazato (Japan)

8.10 Julieta Granada (Paraguay), Amy Yang (South Korea), Christina Kim (USA)

1st tee – PM

12.40 Cheyenne Woods (USA), Marianne Skarpnord (Norway), Minjee Lee (Australia)

12.50 Lydia Ko (NZ), So Yeon Ryu (South Korea), Charley Hull (England)

1.00 Stacey Keating (Australia), Mo Martin (USA), Catriona Matthew (Scotland)

1.10 Lee-Anne Pace (South Africa), Beatriz Recardi (Spain), Na Yeon Choi (South Korea)