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Michelle Wie: “My Dream is the Masters”

Posted January. 20, 2004 00:31,   


A brave girl is continuing her challenge to the world of golf this year. Fourteen-year-old golfing sensation Michelle Wie (Wie Seong-mi), who missed the cut by one stroke in U.S. PGA tour’s Sony Open but also showed flashes of her unlimited potential, is trying to make history by becoming the first female to ever play in the Masters.

She is now scheduled to participate in five adult competitions this season as of January 20. Because amateur players can join a maximum of six U.S. LPGA tour competitions when they are invited by sponsors, Wie will compete with adult pro golfers in a total of seven competitions, including two undecided competitions, like she did last year.

One of the more interesting events Wie will compete in is not a pro tour event, but the US Amateur Public Linx. She was the youngest-ever champion of the US Women’s Amateur Public Linx last year, and she will enter the “dream stage,” the 2005 Masters, if she wins the men’s competition. The eighth of 17 individual qualifiers for entering the Masters is to be the US Amateur Public Linx Champion from the previous year.

“My dream is to take part in the Masters. I don’t think that it won’t be possible,” said Wie as she expressed her hopes in an interview with the foreign press. This goal will be quite difficult to achieve. But we know that Wie recorded an unexpected even par on the same teeing ground against male golfers in a tough U.S. PGA regular event.

She will start her LPGA schedule with the Safeway International, which will open on March 18. And she will continue to compete in LPGA events, including the season’s first major, the Nabisco Championship, in which she tied for ninth place and broke the record for fewest strokes as an amateur last year.

She has plans to challenge for US Women’s Open again as well, for which she will have to pass through a qualifier. She will also attempt to win the US Women’s Amateur Public Linx championship for the second consecutive time.

Young-Sik Ahn ysahn@donga.com