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  • Writer's picturePiers Manktelow

Find out how our "2019 10 to watch" performed

At the beginning of 2019 we selected 10 players who we thought could achieve big things this year. The 10 players were from all over the world and are a mixture of those at the top of the world game and those just starting out. We have given every player a marking out of 10 for their year's achievements.


1. Jin Young Ko (South Korea)

World ranking at start of 2019: 10th

Current World Ranking: 1st (↑9)

What a year that was for JYK. She won 4 times on the LPGA, including 2 majors, the ANA Inspiration and the Evian Championship as well as 3rd at the British Open. She managed 12 top 10s from her 22 starts on the LPGA. She also won the Jinro Championship on the KLPGA, making it 5 wins this year.

Ko also broke Tiger Woods record and went 114 holes in a row without making a bogey or worse!

Can she continue this form into next year and do what Shanshan Feng and Ariya Jutanugarn haven’t been able to do over the last few years and maintain her dominance?

Year Rating: 10/10

2. Jeoungeun Lee6 (South Korea)

World ranking at start of 2019: 20th

Current World Ranking: 7th (↑13)

What a rookie season for 6 following in Jin Young Ko's footsteps. She won the US Open in fine style and then won the rookie of the year easily on the LPGA with 10 top 10 finishes this year. 6 now seems to be a firm fixture in the worlds top 10. Will she do what Ko did last year and go from Rookie of the year to winning the Race to the Globe. She definitely has the game to do so.

Year Rating: 9/10

3. Bronte Law (England)

World ranking at start of 2019: 63rd

Current World Ranking: 31st (↑32)

Bronte, claimed her first LPGA win claiming the Pure Silk Championship and going on to finish 24th on the Race to the Globe. Bronte, managed 3 top 10s on the LPGA. She also shone at the Ryder Cup for Team Europe especially in the Sunday singles and is now arguably the best British player on the LPGA.

Year Rating: 8/10

4. Nasa Hataoka (Japan)

World ranking at start of 2019: 7th

Current World Ranking: 5th (↑2)

Nasa, won the Kia Classic and had 6 top 10s on the LPGA. She went onto finish 14th this year on the Race to the Globe. She rose up the world rankings to be 5th with 2 wins on the JLPGA at the end of the year. Still hard to believe she is only 20!


Year Rating: 8/10

5. Laura Fuenfstueck (Germany)

World ranking at start of 2019: 541st

Current World Ranking: 265th (↑276)

Laura, had a good 2nd season on the LET. She finished 9th on the Order of Merit where she had 6 top 10 finishes with a best of 4th at the Lalla Meryem Cup and at the Estrella Damn Ladies Open in Spain. That doesn’t tell the whole story as she was in contention on numerous occasions this year. One to watch on the LET in 2020.

Year Rating: 7/10

6. Arpichaya Yubol (Thailand)

World ranking at start of 2019: 696th

Current World Ranking: 364th (↑332)

The 17 year old won the Thai LPGA in 2018 with 5 wins in a row!. Last year she finished 2nd with a number of wins in Thailand and countless top 10's on other Asian tours. Still at school and looks set to be another big name to come out of Thailand. Also a very entertaining follow on Instagram!

Year Rating: 8/10

7. Leona Maguire (Ireland)

World ranking at start of 2019: 382nd

Current World Ranking: 254th (↑128)

Leona, came into this season with high expectations after being ranked the world number 1 amateur player for the longest period of time ever and turning pro at the end of 2018. She finished 7th on the Symetra Tour earning her 2020 LPGA tour card. She won twice and had 7 top 10s. She also had a top 10 finish on the LET finishing 5th at the Dubai Moonlight Classic. It will be very interesting to see how she performs on the LPGA next year.

Year Rating: 7/10

8. Kristen Gillman (USA)

World ranking at start of 2019: 196th

Current World Ranking: 48th (↑148)

Kristen, finished her rookie season 35th on the LPGA, with 4 top 10s. She had a best of 3rd in China towards the end of the season. She finished 2nd in the rookie of the year race. Now moved inside the worlds top 50 she will use this years’ experience to go again next year.

Year Rating: 7/10

9. Julia Engstrom (Sweden)

World ranking at start of 2019: 321st

Current World Ranking: 280th (↑84)

A case of what may have been in the final event of the season for Julia. She had a 7 shot lead heading into the final round in Kenya and unfortunately lost on the Sunday where her short putting cost her. She finished 20th on the Order of Merit with 4 top 10s and 3 in her last 5 starts. Still young and will learn from her experience. Julia also had 2 top 10s on the LET Access Series.

Year Rating: 7/10

10. Klara Splikova (Czech Republic)

World ranking at start of 2019: 268th

Current World Ranking: 371st (↓ 103)

Not quite the year we were expecting from Klara. She had good finishes on the LET in 2018 and dominated LPGA qualifying to earn her card for 2019 but it didn’t quite happen this year.

She finished 141st on the Race to the Globe from her 14 events with a best of 32nd. Played her last event of the year on the LET finishing 16th in Spain.

Year Rating: 5/10

Our 2020 10 to watch coming soon.

Check out our 2018 predictions here.

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