x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 20 January 2018

Duo have all to play for to finish second on ladies' European Tour

Though just €12,183 separate the two rising players of women's golf, Caroline Hedwall and Melissa Reid say it would not lead to any further pressure.

Caroline Hedwall is in her first year as a professional.
Caroline Hedwall is in her first year as a professional.

DUBAI // Caroline Hedwall says she believes winning the Omega Dubai Ladies Masters at the Emirates Golf Club and pipping England's Melissa Reid in the race for second place on the money list would represent the zenith of her career.

The Swede, playing her first season as a professional on the Ladies European Tour, has narrowed the gap following her two-shot victory in the Indian Women's Open on Sunday and heads into the four-day event, which starts today, with full of confidence.

A strong finish would cap a memorable rookie year for Hedwall, who enjoyed a tremendous run this season, adding the Indian win to her victories in Slovakia, Finland and Austria.

Ai Miyazato of Japan has already secured the money list title with her victory in the Evian Masters which carried an impressive purse of €363,079.68 (Dh1.8 million) for the winner.

With just €12,183 separating the two rising players of women's golf, they have all to play for, though they said it would not lead to any further pressure.

"I think now it's more realistic to think that I could pass her this week," Hedwall said. "Before then it was a pretty large gap, but it's definitely a goal for this week, but we'll see. It kind of depends on how she plays, too.

"The victory in New Delhi has given me a lot of self confidence and if I can keep the momentum going, I have a good chance of making it two on the trot.

"This is my first visit to Dubai and I am loving every moment of my stay here. The field is great, so I'm excited to play. If I won it, it would be my greatest victory, based upon the level of competition here," she added.

Reid, who has never finished outside the top 10 since making her first appearance in Dubai in 2008, said her game is in good shape even though she has not played any competitive golf in the past six weeks.

"I came here early to work on my game with my coach," Reid said. "Though I may be a bit rusty, I am swinging it well and look forward to a great week.

"Dubai has been very kind to me. I love the [Majlis] course there. It's very exciting and I just love playing it," said Reid, who feels the winning score would probably be around 12-under par.

* Agency