Thursday, January 24, 2013

LPGA Announces International Crown Event For 2014

It has been a big month for announcements for the LPGA. This month they have already announced that new tournaments in Texas, The Bahamas, and China have been added to the 2013 schedule. They have now announced a new one for the 2014 schedule, The International Crown.

Here are some of the key details.

The tournament will make its debut in July of 2014 in Baltimore, Maryland, it will then be moved to Rich Harvest Farms, in Chicago Il. Rich Harvest Farms, as you might well remember, was host to the 2009 Solheim Cup.

Eight teams based on cumulative Rolex Rankings of each country's top four players at the conclusion of the 2013 CME Group Titleholders will qualify for the event. If teams for the Crown were selected according to the current Rolex Rankings, South Korea, the U.S., Japan, Sweden, Australia, Spain, Taiwan, and England would battle for the inaugural title.

The final field of 32 players will be determined after the Rolex Rankings have been published on the Monday of the 2014 Kraft Nabisco Championship week. At that point the top 4 ranked players' from each pre-qualified country will make up their country's team.

This will be a four day competition. It will feature three days of four-ball competition and one day of singles matches on Sunday. There will be a cut after the completion of Saturday's play, with only 5 teams moving on to Sunday.

Points will be awarded per match based on the following:
2 points for a win
1 point for a tie
0 points for a loss

The eight countries will be seeded #1 through #8, and will be divided into two brackets based on the cumulative team score of the four players Rolex Ranking on the Monday of the Kraft Nabisco Championship week.

Bracket A                 Bracket B
Country #1                 Country #2
Country #3                 Country #4
Country #5                 Country #6
Country #7                 Country #8

At the conclusion of the 3 days of four-ball competition the two teams with the most points from each bracket and one wild card team will advance to Sunday's singles matches.

My thoughts on this event:
Once again Commissioner Michael Whan's ability to think "outside the box," has led to another exciting tournament. This is the event we have all been waiting for. It will be played on even numbered years, as the Solheim cup is played in odd numbered years. Can you imagine a South Korean team made up of I.K. Kim, Na-Yeon Choi, Inbee Park, and So Yeon Ryu? It really scares me, but I will be looking forward to the challenges it will provide to all the other teams, and how they will react to that challenge.

Like everything else, this will have its imperfections. As I look at the Rolex Rankings, Suzann Pettersen will not be eligible because Norway doesn't have 3 other ranked players.


Awsi Dooger said...

This satisfies a couple of the criteria I mentioned in the schedule thread, a need for creativity including a team event.

Great idea but I don't like the complete separation of the top ranked team from number two and number three during the first three days. That means in all likelihood South Koreans won't face Americans until Sunday. Frankly, that's just stupid. The first two editions are within the United States, and for good reason. The sport needs a domestic boost. You're forcing the American spectators and viewing audience to wade through matchups they don't care about for 75% of the event.

Anonymous said...

thanks for share.

Tony Jesselli (Tonyj5) said...

Awsi - I think that is the whole point. To keep the top seeds in different brackets, and keep people watching until the end.

It is the way it is done in NCAA football,and all the tennis majors.
If Roger Federer and Novac Djokovic are numbers 1 and 2, they will not meet until the final.