Alexis Thompson, the next fast-track teen in women’s golf, will be the player to watch when she makes her debut at the Omega Dubai Ladies Masters, starting at the Emirates Golf Club from December 6 to 11.
The latest American golfing teen phenom, who at 15 is the youngest female professional golfer in the world, will join Britain’s all-time great Laura Davies, the oldest pro at 47, among other top-draws in what promises to be an absorbing contest in the sun.
The battle of the generations will be one of the major highlights of the season-ending Ladies European Tour event which will also see defending champion In-Kyung Kim and charismatic Michelle Wie renew their rivalry in one of the strongest fields ever assembled outside a major.
Young prodigy from Coral Springs, Thompson has already flashed a glimpse of her precocious talent, finishing tied for second at the 2010 Evian Masters, just a single stroke behind world number one Jiyai Shin. And just a few weeks before, she tied for 10th at the US Women's Open.
Few eyebrows were raised when she made her pro debut at Shoprite LPGA Classic professional in June this year, but she had faith in her ability to compete at the highest level and she proved it beyond a doubt.
“I thought my game was ready. I wanted to take my game to the next level and play against the best in the world," said Thompson, who first attracted headlines as the first preteen to qualify for the US Women’s Open – teeing it up at age 12 in 2007 at Pine Needles.
“Nobody pushed me out there. It was totally my idea,” said Thompson who twice won the Junior PGA Championship and claimed the 2008 US Girls’ Junior before turning pro. “If you're good enough, you're good enough. And she is one of the better golfers in the world right now,” as Laura Davies said.
Fondly referred to as Golf’s Next Big Star, Thompson is now looking forward to her first visit to Dubai and playing in what she calls “one of the best women’s tournaments in the world.”
“I am extremely honoured at the opportunity to compete at the Omega Dubai Ladies Masters,” she said ahead of the Omega Dubai Ladies Masters, promoted and organised by golf in DUBAi.
“Receiving an invitation to play in Dubai was always high on my priority list because it is one of the best events. This will be my first trip to Dubai and I am very excited,” said Thompson, who is currently ranked 34th on 2010 LPGA Tour Money List with more than $336,000 in earnings in only six professional tournaments.
“Playing at the Omega Dubai Ladies Masters presents me with an opportunity to see a different country and culture that most teenagers do not get to do,” said the high school sophomore who is home schooled and would like to play 15 to 17 tournaments in 2011, including some non-LPGA events.
Mohamed Juma Buamaim, vice-chairman and CEO of ‘golf in DUBAi, said: “Alexis may be young but what she has achieved so far is simply phenomenal. She is a special talent and we are delighted to invite her to play in Dubai. I am sure young girls look up to her for inspiration and her presence will certainly add to the excitement.”
'golf in DUBAi' is backed by Omega as the title sponsor and Dubal (Dubai Aluminium) as the sponsor. The co-sponsors are: CNN, Gulf News, Emirates NBD, Mercedes-Benz, Jumeirah and wasl while Dubai Duty Free, Carpetland and Motivate are the Patrons in golf in DUBAi’s drive to showcase the emirate's vibrant golfing scene to a worldwide audience.