The third renewal of the LPGA’s UL International Crown is set to be held October 4-7 at the Jack Nicklaus Golf Club in Incheon City, South Korea. Eight countries have qualified to compete in the event based on their individual team member’s positions on the Rolex Rankings.
Korea: Sung Hyun Park, So Yeon Ryu, In-Kyung Kim and In Gee Chun
USA: Lexi Thompson, Jessica Korda, Cristie Kerr and Michelle Wie
Japan: Nasa Hataoka, Ai Suzuki, Misuzu Narita and Mamiko Higa
England: Charley Hull, Georgia Hall, Jodi Ewart Shadoff and Bronte Law
Australia: Minjee Lee, Katherine Kirk, Sarah Jane Smith and Su Oh)
Thailand: Ariya Jutanugarn, Moriya Jutanugarn, Pornanong Phatlum and Sherman Santiwiwatthanaphong
Sweden: Anna Nordqvist, Pernilla Lindberg, Madelene Sagstrom and Caroline Hedwall
Chinese Taipei: Teresa Lu, Wei-Ling Hsu, Hsuan-Yu Yao and Candie Kung
Olympic Gold Medalist, Inbee Park qualified for the Korean Team, but has decided not to compete and gave her spot to two-time major champion, In Gee Chun.
The seedings and pool play for round robin matches are as follows:
Pool A Pool B
Korea United States
Chinese Taipei Sweden
Winner of 39 professional events worldwide, including five major championships, plus a member of the World Golf Hall of Fame, Korean golfing legend Se Ri Pak, has been appointed as the Honorary Director for this year’s UL International Crown.
This will be the first time the UL International Crown has been contested outside the United States. In 2014 Spain won the inaugural event at Caves Valley Golf Club near Baltimore, Md., where Spain surprised everyone by making it out of pool play to best Korea and win the first UL International Crown. The United States prevailed two years ago at the Merit Club in Chicago.
On paper it is hard to bet against Korea. Sung Hyun Park is the current No. 1 player in the world and in just her second year on the LPGA Tour has won five titles, including two majors. She was also named Rookie of the Year and won Player of the Year honors last year on the LPGA Tour. So Yeon Ryu has won six LPGA events, including two majors and is ranked No. 3 in the world. I.K. Kim won the 2017 Women’s British Open and is a seasoned performer. In Gee Chun has 13 professional wins, with two wins on the LPGA Tour. Both, however, were major championships, the 2015 U.S. Women’s Open and the 2016 Evian Championship.
With the Koreans dominating women’s golf over the past several years, they will want to prove to the world that their failure to win the first two UL International Crowns was a fluke. Especially with the matches being held in Korea.