NAPLES, Fla. – Inbee Park, Suzann Pettersen and Stacy Lewis get one more chance to make an impression on each other before the 2013 season ends.
The Rolex No. 1-2-3 players in the world are all paired together in Thursday’s start of the season-ending CME Group Titleholders at Tiburon. They are scheduled to tee off the first hole at 10:41 a.m.
The trio has combined to win 13 of 27 LPGA events this year and all the majors.
“I think it's always nice to have a rival, especially this year,” said Park, who has already clinched Rolex Player of the Year. “Stacy and Suzann have been very good competitors for me, and they really pushed me to play better. I think if it wasn't for them, I don't think I'd be able to achieve what I achieved so far, because they made me realize how much I really wanted to stand here.
“But, honestly, I don't really want to think about Suzann or Stacy anymore, because I've been thinking about them so much this year.”
Lewis won the Rolex Player of the Year award last year and believes this year was equally good for her. Lewis won three times this season with a tour-best 18 top-10 finishes. She won four times last year with fewer top 10s.
“I've played pretty similar to last year,” Lewis said. “It's just Inbee and Suzann are also playing really good, too. But it's been fun this year, kind of having the three of us going back and forth. I almost feel like this year's been better than last year, but I ended up third in the Player of the Year standings. So, it just shows how good they've played.”
Though Park has wrapped up POY, there are still some big prizes left to be taken this week. The No. 1 world ranking is in play for Pettersen. The LPGA money-winning title and the Vare Trophy for low scoring average are still in play for all three players.