Wednesday, December 29, 2010

A Hitchhiker's Guide to the New and Improved JLPGA Web Site

The LPGA of Japan's web site has been upgraded for the new year, so it's about time I updated my March 2008 guide to it. While the JLPGA has made it easier to link to key pages (they no longer hide the URLs of most pages), they still don't make it easy for those like me who are fluent only in English.

That said, I really like the site redesign. The navigation tabs in the green bar at the top of the page take you, from left to right, back to the home page, to the news page, to the tournaments page (with a useful drop-down menu that includes the schedule and money list, among other links), to the players page (not so useful, as you have to search in it--see below for a way around this), to a page that lists information about a "pro test" (basically a mandatory players' meeting), to a page about their 4-stage Q-School, to an instructional page, to a juniors page, and to an "about the JLPGA" page (with another useful drop-down menu). When you're in any of the tournament pages, you also get a great left-margin navbar with quick links about the JLPGA and its majors, the Step-Up Tour, and the Legends Tour, as well as ways of tracking how Japanese female golfers are playing on other tours.

But in case you don't have google translate on your toolbar, don't know much hiragana, katakana, or kanji, or don't like hunting around a site that's not in English, here are links to the most useful pages on the site.

Schedule: This is the most important link, as it lists winners of events played and defending champions of ones as-yet-unplayed, links to tournament sites, and, most important, links to the JLPGA tournament page for each event that is being or has been played (where the round-by-round results [試合結果], pairings [ペアリング], and press releases [トピックス] can be found). If you're interested in previous years' schedules and results going back to 1967, just use the drop-down menu in the top-right corner of the page.

Q-School: This link condenses all the information that had been scattered across several pages on the old site design, but removes the English translations that used to be on it. So my October 2009 overview is still relevant, even if its links no longer work.

Stats: The Official Money List is the first link on the page, followed by scoring average, greens in regulation rate, putting average, par rate, eagle ranking, and birdie rate. The Career Money List page gives better information than most career money lists--it tells you, for instance, how many events the golfer has played in, not just how much money they have made, but like all career money lists I've ever seen, it fails to list the player's rookie year, which would allow you to compare classes and generations without doing a bunch of extra work.

Keep in mind that a click on a player's name on most of the stats pages will take you to her profile page, which has been reorganized: the 1st tab on the left in the middle of her page is her basic profile (this is the default setting when you 1st come to the profile page), the 2nd is her results from the current (or most recent) season, the 3rd is a career overview (consisting of wins/best finishes and season-by-season winnings and scoring averages as a JLPGA member), and the last is a form for sending a message to the player.

I'll link to the top players' profiles pages when I finish my ranking of the JLPGA's finest as of the end of the 2010 season--hopefully tomorrow.

[Update 1 (12/30/10, 7:50 pm): Ah, here it is!]

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