The JLPGA's diversity is on display at the top of the Hoken No Madoguchi Ladies leaderboard today. 27-year-old Yumiko Yoshida, a 4-time winner on tour who has made a quantum leap in recent years to join the game's elite (as 3 of her wins came last season), is tied for the lead at -3 with 18-year-old amateur Asuka Kashiwabara, while a range of youngsters (Haruka Kudo, 21, at -2; Ai Suzuki, 20, at -1; Natsuka Hori, 21, at -1; Miki Sakai, 22, at -1; and Kumiko Kaneda, 24, at -1), veterans (Hiroko Fukushima, 36, at -2; Mi-Jeong Jeon, 31, at -2; Soo-Yun Kang, 38, at -1; Ji-Hee Lee, 35, at -1; Yukari Baba, 31, at -1; and Yukari Nishiyama, 31, at -1), and mid-career players (Akari Yamamoto, 26, at -2; Hikari Kawamitsu, 27, at -2; Miki Saiki, 29, at -1; Sakura Yokomine, 28, at -1; Ji-Woo Lee, 28, at -1; and Mayu Hattori, 26, at -1) chase them.
It's certainly encouraging to see big names like Jeon, Lee, Yokomine, and Saiki near the top of the leaderboard. And Bo-Mee Lee, Rikako Morita, and Momoko Ueda at +1 and Ji-Yai Shin, Shanshan Feng, Ayako Uehara, and Teresa Lu at +2 are by no means out of it. Meanwhile, Mamiko Higa and Erika Kikuchi at +4 and and Shiho Oyama, Onnarin Sattayabanphot, and Yuki Ichinose at +3 have a little more work cut out for them just to make the cut.
Let's see how this one shapes up!