Golf: World's top 10 confirm appearance for March's HSBC Women's Champions

Lydia Ko (left), Park In Bee (centre) and Stacy Lewis will feature in next month's HSBC Women's Champions at the Sentosa Golf Club (SGC).
Lydia Ko (left), Park In Bee (centre) and Stacy Lewis will feature in next month's HSBC Women's Champions at the Sentosa Golf Club (SGC).PHOTO: ACTION IMAGES, AFP

SINGAPORE - Next month's HSBC Women's Champions will feature the world's top-10 female golfers competing in the US$1.5 million (S$2.1 million) tournament, organisers announced on Thursday.

Besides world No. 1 Lydia Ko and second ranked and defending champion Park In Bee, both of whom having already confirmed their participation at the March 3-6 event, the remaining eight players will line up at the Sentosa Golf Club (SGC).

They include Americans Stacy Lewis (world No. 3) and Lexi Thompson (No. 4), China's Feng Shanshan (No. 6) and a clutch of South Koreans Ryu So Yeon (No. 5), Kim Sei Young (No. 7), Amy Yang (No. 8), Chun In Gee (No. 9) and Kim Hyo Joo (No. 10).

Said Lewis, who is a two-time Major champion:"The HSBC Women's Champions is one of the toughest tournaments on the tour, as the quality of the field is always exceptional.

"Lydia and In Bee are the in-form players at the moment; they are great competitors and deserving champions. But I am working hard on my game. I came in third last year behind them but I have won this before, so no reason why I cannot do it again."

Compatriot Thompson, 20, added: "I am looking forward to returning to Singapore as the tournament is such a great event and the people there are so warm and friendly.

"I played the last three years but didn't manage to get my game together to challenge for the title come Sunday. I worked on a few things, it is a new year, new season, so anything can happen."

Having finished tied-second and tied-fourth in the 2012 and 2015 editions respectively, Feng is determined to lift the trophy this time. She said: "The HSBC Women's Champions is one of my favourite tournaments on the tour, and one that I have been close to winning.

"Training has gone well over the off-season and I am looking forward to a good start in 2016. I am looking forward to catching up with my fans in Singapore and experiencing the new-look and feel of the event."

Singapore will be represented by local pro Koh Sock Hwee, who won the host country qualifying tournament in January.

The ninth edition of the HSBC Women's Champions will also see British pop group Take That give a one-off concert on Saturday, March 5, at the SGC driving range. Meanwhile, celebrity chef Monica Galetti will headline the culinary element of the four-day festival.