The article below was written by George Cooper of National Club Golfer.
Many of the sport’s biggest names have been involved in one way or another in helping women’s golf reach where it is today. To celebrate Women’s Golf Day, here is our tribute to the most influential women in golf…
The stats and figures on Wright’s record are incredible. Here are a couple of pearlers:
+ She won 13 major championship titles, second only to Patty Berg’s 15, and all these wins came in an eight-year period.
+ She holds – and always will hold – the LPGA Tour record for most victories in a single season with 13 in 1963. She is also second, along with Annika Sorenstam, on this list with 11 wins the following year. Forty-four of her wins came in a four-year period.
+ She also went 14 years straight with a win on tour. Mind boggling.
“She had the finest swing I ever saw,” Ben Hogan once said.
Another contender for the GOAT. Having retired with 93 professional titles and an incredible 10 major championship wins, Sorenstam really did achieve everything in golf.
She was very much at the head of the game as women’s golf continued to emerge from the shadows and began to become the spectacle that is it today.
Dame Laura Davies
Next is the lady who really sums up what it is to be a British golfing superstar.
Davies has won four major championships and proved that the LPGA Tour could be conquered by non-Americans when she became the first player from overseas to top the LPGA money list.
Se Ri Pak
The first Asian female to win a golf major and has since become a huge inspiration to many of those who have followed in her footsteps.
Incredibly, Pak won two majors in her rookie season on the LPGA Tour in 1998 and unsurprisingly, there was much more to come.
The Hall of Fame’s youngest ever inductee in 2007, Pak retired with 39 professional wins, including five majors.
Berg still holds the record for the most major championships won by a female golfer with 15 under her belt.
Not only was she hugely successful in an individual capacity but she was also one of the 13 golfers that came together to form the LPGA and became the first president of the organisation.
Alongside Berg and 11 other golfing icons, Zaharias was also a founding member of the LPGA.
Unlike many of today’s golf stars, she was not set on a career in golf from a young age but instead was competing in track and field events in which she won two gold medals at the 1932 Olympics.
Once golf was her focus, she claimed an impressive 10 majors.
Nicknamed ‘Miss Personality’, Smith was a key founding member of the LPGA and her career outlasted that of all her co-founders.
She won 21 times on the tour with two majors before going on to become the first female to work on a broadcast of men’s golf.
A shout out too to the other LPGA co-founders: Louise Suggs, Sally Sessions, Betty Jameson, Opal Hill, Helen Hicks, Shirley Spork, Marlene Beuer Hage, Helen Dettweiner, Alice Beuer, and Bettye Dannoff.
All of these women played their part in creating one of the most successful golf tours in the game.
Wie burst onto the scene as a teenager and turned professional when she was just 15.
She has become an icon for the modern game and has helped the female game to move forward in terms of publicity and sponsorship as well as on the course.
Having turned professional in 1962, the American enjoyed a successful career on the LPGA Tour winning 26 times.
She has been an incredible ambassador for the sport and still spends a lot of her time around the game as she is now an analyst for Golf Channel.