Andalucia Costa del Sol Open de Espana preview & 4 to watch
Location: Marbella, Spain
Course: Aloha Golf Club
Prize Fund: €300,000
Defending Champion: Anne Van Dam (Netherlands) -13
There are so many previous winners playing here this week, this has easily got to be one of the strongest fields of the whole season. It should exciting to with the announcement that Andalucía Costa del Sol Open de España has made a massive commitment to women’s golf on the LET with the prize fund to double for 2020: going from €300,000 to €600,000 and the Costa del Sol will sponsor the Ladies European Tour Order of Merit, which will be called ‘Race to Costa del Sol’ from next year.
Some big names have made the journey over from America due to the end of the LPGA season. None more so than Anne Van Dam who is the defending champion this week and she said yesterday “Last year I came off probably the best golf stretch of my career, winning the Estrella Damm Mediterranean Ladies Open with a 72-hole total of minus 26, and then getting my LPGA card, so I was really relaxed going into the Spanish Open, and with Roelof (my boyfriend) caddying and my mum there as well, I just wanted to finish off the year well and have fun,” She is coming off a mixed rookie year on the LPGA, so it will be interesting to see how she performs this week.
Winners this year who are playing this week include; Christine Wolf, who won the Indian Open recently, Carly Booth who won in the Czech Republic, Annabelle Dimmock who won the Jabra Classic at the Evian Resort and Nuria Iturrioz who won back to back events in April and May in Morocco and Dubai and who has won on the Symetra Tour this year.
Below we look at 4 players who we think may lift the trophy come the weekend;
Azahara Munoz (Spain)
Muñoz, won the title in 2016 (at Aloha Golf, this weeks venue) and in 2017 (at Guadalmina), and finished runner up to Van Dam last year by 3 shots, so she definitely loves this event.
Munoz, just finished 33rd in the CME Tour Championship to finish the LPGA season 21st overall and 42nd in the world rankings. She had 7 top 10’s on the LPGA with a seasons best of runner up at the Kia Classic.
Before the Tour Championship she finished 11th and 10th in her last events in Asia so is coming into this is in good form. She finished the season 10th for birdies made with 353.
On the LET she played in the LACOSTE LADIES OPEN DE FRANCE a few months ago finishing 5th.
She won this event at this course in 2016 and will be looking to pick up her first win this year back in her native Spain. Should start favorite
Marianne Skarpnord (Norway)
Marianne, has had a great season and currently leads the Order of Merit with 2 tournaments to go. After finishing runner up in the opening event of the season at the Fatima Bint Mubarak Open Marianne won the Australian Ladies Classic to take the lead in the Order of Merit and she has never really looked back always being close to the top of the rankings.
As well as her victory she has had 10 top 10’s from her 16 starts! Her recent form is good as well finishing runner up last time out at the Indian Open. Before that she finished 9th, in Spain at the Estrella Damn Ladies Open. A win here will go a long way to securing the Order of Merit title.
Nanna Koerstz Madsen (Denmark)
This was a tough call between 2 Danish players in Nanna and Nicole Broch Larsen. Nanna, has really established herself on the LPGA tour this year after a disappointing rookie season. This year she finished 38th on the race to the globe with 2 top 10’s and a runner up finish at the Indy Women in Tech Championship.
She finished 29th at the season ending Tour Championship last week so will look to carry some form into this event. She was 4th on tour this year for putts per GIR with 1.75 ,1 place ahead of Jin Young Ko. Very capable of going very low as she showed this year.
If she gets her irons going and finds the greens she will be the one to catch this week.
Olivia Cowan (Germany)
Olivia, is another player having a good season and another player on a good run of late. In her last 3 events on the LET she has finished 6th, 5th, and 15th. In between that and this event she played well in LPGA Q school final but was unlucky to miss out on her 2020 card.
Her best result this season came at the Dubai Moonlight Classic where she finished runner up. She also had a good British Open ending up 29th.
Cowan, has played some lovely golf this year and there would be no better way to cap it off with a win at 1 of the last 2 events of the season, It will be exactly what she deserves.
She finished 7th in this event last time it was held at this course. Currently 7th on the Order of Merit, can she push on up to the top 5. Currently 182nd in the Rolex rankings.
If you think you can predict the winner of the event, join our prediction game on twitter, Facebook or Instagram. it’s the last one of the season!
We are going for Nanna