|The second LETAS event of the year will be played at Golf de la Nivelle from April 13-15, adding further impetus to the burgeoning 2011 schedule. |
The 2008 Portugal Ladies Open champion Anne-Lise Caudal from France heads a stellar cast of competitors and will be playing on her own doorstep in the town of Ciboure, South-Western France.
The 2010 LETAS Order of Merit winner Caroline Afonso, who lives in the nearby town of Anglet, defends the title she claimed last year by a one stroke margin over Spain’s Marina Arruti.
Caudal is ranked 16th on the Ladies European Tour’s Henderson Money List after four events played this season. She tied for seventh at the recent Lalla Meryem Cup in Morocco with three other players including Klara Spilkova from the Czech Republic, who is also competing.
The 16-year-old rookie professional from Prague is one to watch, along with Maha Haddioui, the standard bearer for Moroccan women’s golf, who will hope to carry her form across from the Lalla Meryem Cup in her home country where she finished in a tie for 25th place.
Flying the flag for Japan will be Erika Kuwahara, who has received an invitation to play from the French Golf Federation (FFG) as the event is organised in collaboration with its Generali Ladies Tour.
Kuwahara will be joined by a number of fellow Ladies European Tour rookies including Lucie Andre, Joanna Klatten, Marion Ricordeau and Audrey Riguelle from France. Belgians Benedicte Toumpsin and Line Willems, Melanie Maetzler of Switzerland and Marieke Nivard of the Netherlands are also making an appearance.
There is a large contingent from the amateur ranks and the most in-form player is arguably 18-year-old Parisienne Alexandra Bonetti, who tied for second at the recent Lalla Meryem Cup on the Ladies European Tour after a final round of six under par 66. Bonetti won the 2010 British Girls Amateur Championship at Royal Belfast and will commence a golf scholarship at Texas Christian University in the United States this August.
English amateurs Hannah Barwood and Charlotte Ellis, who recently finished in 64th place at the Lalla Meryem Cup, will also tee up while on the other end of the experience spectrum, Frenchwomen Ludivine Kreutz and Sophie Giquel-Bettan, Italian Sophie Sandolo and Spain’s Ana Larraneta will hope to challenge for the title.
Once again the tournament has attracted an international line-up representing 20 different nations, including those as far and wide as Australia, Serbia, Estonia and Japan. The field of 96 competitors will play for a purse of €25,000 over three rounds from Wednesday to Friday, with a cut to the leading 25 professionals and those tied after two rounds.