Lexi Thompson Can Earn Way To LPGA
By Kickntrue on 7/6/11
16 year old Lexi Thompson will finally get the chance she's desired. The LPGA has extended Thompson a chance to earn her way on to the LPGA Tour through qualifying school, an opportunity that until now was shut to her based on her age. LPGA rules state that a member must be 18.
LPGA commissioner Mike Whan said in a statement to Golfweek: “The LPGA has previously granted players under the age of 18 the ability to compete in the LPGA Qualifying Tournament (Aree Song, Morgan Pressel, Jessica Korda). Lexi Thompson will also have that same opportunity – to earn her way to the LPGA Tour, or the LPGA Futures Tour, via the LPGA Qualifying Tournament, a three-stage, 13-round qualifying process.”
So good news for Lexi!
The first stage of LPGA qualifying school is set for July 26-29 at LPGA International in Daytona Beach, Florida, the same week as the Ricoh Women’s British Open. While the top 100 as of July 12 are exempt from the first stage, Lexi is currently ranked No. 120 in the world. However, if she finishes well at Broadmoor, she could move up in the rankings, which would allow her to compete in the British.
It's good that Lexi will get a chance to make the Tour- the LPGA could certainly use her star power. Those following remotely close to the women's game know she's been an up and comer for 4 years now- and looks like she could capitalize on all of the promise that Michelle Wie has never quite delivered on. I just hope for Lexi's sake she has her A-game going for the qualifying events. If she were allowed to play more, she'd easily be qualified for the LPGA through the money list and world ranking. Because she's been limited- her "credentials" aren't good enough, despite being indisputably one of the top 5 to 10 American women golfers in the world.

Fears aside of the family pushing their daughter along too quickly to adulthood, Lexi certainly has the talent to play and here's hoping she makes it!

Full Story
Lexi Thompson Wikipedia

photo via LexiThompson.com

[ comments ]
bkuehn1952 says:
I have already expressed the opinion that a 16 year old has no business touring the world as a golf professional. This is not about ability. It is everything about the fact that she is a sheltered 16 year old who appears to be very mature but in the end is a 16 year old home-schooled girl.

I think this reveals a certain degree of panic by the LPGA brass. They desparately want a USA-born super star and now they are pinning their hopes on Alexis.
oobscott2 says:
i think if you have the ability, you should be allowed to play. It's a free country and if you have the game or the money to qualify, then you should be allowed.
Duke of Hazards says:
if anything, a 16 yo girl that has been sheltered and home schooled her entire life could use some exposure to 'the world'. probably be the best thing for her. she'll still be carefully handled. the lpga needs her badly.
birdieXris says:
While i agree with both Bkuehn1952 and the Duke, i think i have to favor Hazard's point of view. If she's truly been sheltered and home schooled then trotting around the world is a perfect idea. Now, the undue pressure of doing it on the biggest ladies tour is kinda sucky, and also the fact that it DOES show some panic by the LPGA is something to consider. Does a 16 year old really need that kind of pressure and press when she's FINALLY allowed to do what she's been asking to do for a couple years? No. i don't think she needs it, and i don't think it's fair, but she does have the game to nip it in the bud and become an overnight sensation. I mean, literally overnight if she comes on strong and stays and contends in her debut.
Duke of Hazards says:
and that's the kicker, birdie. there are dozens of super talented young athletes in most sports. it's finding the rare super-talent that has the mental/emotional fortitude to maintain composure under intense late tournament pressure and emerge with a WIN. Tiger, Jordan, Nicklaus, Federer. Is it inate? learned? both? Remains to be seen if Rory can develop 'it', but I believe as he does that the more you put yourself in a situation, i.e. contention, the more comfortable you become.
Paolo says:
Lionel Messi moved from Argentina at the age of 13, ok with his family. So with a supportive family travelling with you keeping you on the straight & narrow there's no reason age should stop sporting greatness.
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