China’s Lin Xiyu says that this week’s World Ladies Championship at Mission Hills Resort Dongguan will be the ideal warm up for the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro where she will be targeting individual and national glory.
Although only individual medals will be awarded when golf returns to the Games this summer for the first time since 1904, the World Ladies Championship’s innovative format includes a team competition based on the combined scores of two players from the same country.
Lin said: “This tournament is kind of similar to the Olympics because we are playing for ourselves but also as part of a team and I’m here with Pan Yan-Hong. We were part of the same Province team before, when we played on the National team, so we know each other. We are a team but we are playing our own games.
“I think that will give me experience and also Mission Hills and the National Team have helped me a lot throughout my career, so I think it’s an important tournament and I’m glad to be here.”
This is a big year for many of the Olympic hopefuls in the field of 126 competitors, who have taken their preparations to the next level in 2016. Denmark’s Nicole Broch Larsen is looking fitter, stronger and hungrier than ever after a successful start to the season, which included a third place finish in the recent RACV Ladies Masters in Australia.
Last week seven time major champion Inbee Park, 27, expressed her concerns about the Zika virus. She said she would be taking advice of her doctor before committing to play for South Korea. She wants to know if the virus can affect a pregnancy years after a person has been exposed to it. Park plans to start a family soon and has said she wonders whether the Olympic Games are being staged in the right place.