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Initial field listed for Augusta National Women’s Amateur

The field is nearly set for the inaugural Augusta National Women’s Amateur Championship.

The tournament announced Tuesday the first 66 players who have accepted invitations into the 72-player field for the April 3-6 event in Augusta, Ga. The initial commitments include three players who earned their exemptions by winning recognized events, 55 qualifiers from the final Women’s World Amateur Golf Ranking of 2018 (28 from the U.S. and the rest from around the world), and eight committee picks.

The remaining spots will be filled by the tournament committee.

Forty of the top 50 women’s amateurs in the world (as of 2018’s final WAGR), including five of the top 10, are set to tee it up, led by No. 2-ranked Jennifer Kupcho, a senior at Wake Forest and the reigning NCAA individual champion. South Korea’s Jiwon Jeon, who plays at Alabama, will be the top-ranked international player to compete at No. 4 in the world.

“Receiving an invitation to the Augusta National Women’s Amateur is representative of a remarkable amateur career, and so much more,” said Fred Ridley, chairman of Augusta National Golf Club and the Masters Tournament. “We share in the excitement of the players, not only for what will unfold in April, but also for what their involvement will mean to increasing interest in the women’s game.”

Other notable qualifiers set to compete include USC trio Jennifer Chang (31), Allisen Corpuz (44) and Alyaa Abdulghany (81). Duke boasts a field-high four competitors – Jaravee Boonchant (29), Ana Belac (45), Gina Kim (46) and Virginia Elena Carta (60).

Thitikul, 15, is the highest-ranked junior golfer in the field at No. 8 in the world, followed by American Lucy Li (9).

Former UCLA teammates Lilia Vu, currently No. 1 in the world though no longer with the Bruins, and Patty Tavatanakit, ranked third, are not listed in the field. Neither is UCLA’s Mariel Galdiano (16). Vu is set to turn pro in March. Sweden’s Frida Kinhult (6), Switzerland’s Albane Valenzuela (7), Germany’s Esther Henseleit (10), and Americans Rachel Heck (12) and Yealimi Noh (15) were the other top-20 players not part of what still is shaping up to be a stacked field. (Henseleit has since turned pro and Noh is expected to before April’s event.)

Noh was automatically qualified for this event via her wins at both the U.S. Girls’ Junior Amateur and Girls Junior PGA Championship. However, there are still three players who qualified by winning a recognized tournament – Thailand’s Atthaya Thitikul (Women’s Asia-Pacific Amateur), Germany’s Leonie Harm (Ladies’ British Open Amateur) and Austria’s Emma Spitz (Girls’ British Open Amateur).

(Starting this year, winners of the Augusta National Women’s Amateur will receive a five-year exemption into the championship.)

The first 36 holes of the 54-hole Augusta National Women’s Amateur will be played at Champions Retreat Golf Club with the top 30 players making the cut. The entire field will then play in a practice round at Augusta National on April 5. The final round will take place at Augusta National on April 6 and will feature the competitors who made the cut.

NBC will broadcast the final round from noon-3 p.m. ET with Golf Channel providing highlights, live reports and news coverage during the event.

Here is a look at the players currently in the field, listed in order of their Week 52 WAGR standing:

  • Jennifer Kupcho, 2
  • Jiwon Jeon, 4
  • Andrea Lee, 5
  • Atthaya Thitikul, 8
  • Lucy Li, 9
  • Ainhoa Olarra, 11
  • Maria Fassi, 13
  • Alessia Nobilio, 14
  • Yuka Yasuda, 17
  • Leonie Harm, 18
  • Sierra Brooks, 19
  • Linn Grant, 20
  • Dylan Kim, 21
  • Emilia Migliaccio, 22
  • Emma Spitz, 23
  • Pimnipa Panthong, 24
  • Olivia Mehaffey, 26
  • Kaitlyn Papp, 27
  • Rose Zhang, 28
  • Jaravee Boonchant, 29
  • Isabella Fierro, 30
  • Jennifer Chang, 31
  • Beatrice Wallin, 33
  • Natalie Srinivasan, 34
  • Haley Moore, 35
  • Yuka Saso, 36
  • Maja Stark, 37
  • Amanda Linner, 38
  • Anna Redding, 39
  • Alice Hewson, 40
  • Seo-Yun Kwon, 41
  • Alessandra Fanali, 42
  • Stephanie Lau, 43
  • Allisen Corpuz, 44
  • Ana Belac, 45
  • Gina Kim, 46
  • Haylee Harford, 47
  • Marta Perez, 48
  • Michaela Finn, 49
  • Annabell Fuller, 50
  • Yu-Chiang Hou, 51
  • Caterina Don, 53
  • Tilda Larsson, 54
  • Lily May Humphreys, 55
  • Agathe Laisne, 58
  • Lauren Hartlage, 59
  • Virginia Elena Carta, 60
  • Emilee Hoffman, 63
  • Erica Shepherd, 74
  • Allyson Geer-Park, 76
  • Wenyung Keh, 77
  • Tristyn Nowlin, 78
  • Julienna Soo, 80
  • Alyaa Abdulghany, 81
  • Brooke Seay, 88
  • Alice Chen, 90
  • Hanna Alberto, 93
  • Ellie Slama, 98
  • Alexa Pano, 99
  • Kaleigh Telfer, 101
  • Amanda Doherty, 103
  • Loy Hee Ying, 131
  • Valentina Giraldo, 132
  • Mariah Smith, 142
  • Brigitte Thibault, 221
  • Sofia Anokhina, 235