Sorenstam First Woman in 58 Years to Play in PGA, Augusta Passes New Protest Rules

Golf star Annika Sorenstam last Wednesday accepted an invitation to play in the PGA’s upcoming Colonial tournament–making her the first woman in 58 years to compete in the event. Sorenstam, currently the top-ranking player on the LPGA Tour, won 13 competitions worldwide last year, and two years ago she became the first woman to earn over $2 million in a single season, reported the Free Press News Service.

Sorenstam’s intention to play this May has drawn wide media attention and publicity. PGA player Phil Mickelson explained, “I’m as curious as anybody to see how the best LPGA player of today, and possibly of all time, will play against the men,” according to the Free Press. Still LPGA Tour commissioner Ty Votaw stressed, “This is Annika vs. AnnikaÉIt’s about Annika challenging herself and breaking down barriers, never stopping in her quest to improve and test her abilities.” The Colonial is a 7,080-yard, par 70 course located in Fort Worth, Texas.

Augusta Richmond county commissioners yesterday approved a new ordinance requiring protesters to obtain permits 20 days before their demonstration. In the last month, the proposed changes had come up for a vote twice–both times the commissioners voted along racial lines (5 whites in favor, 5 blacks opposing). On Tuesday, Augusta mayor Bob Young, tipped the scale, breaking the 5-5 tie to support the new ordinance.

Since June 2002, the National Council of Women’s Organizations (NCWO) has spearheaded efforts to open up male-only membership at Augusta National Golf Club to women.


NBCSports.com 2/12/03; Press Democrat 2/13/03; Free Press News Services 2/13/03; Associated Press 2/10/03, 2/14/03

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