PITTSFORD, N.Y. – Ariya Jutanugarn’s right arm was in a sling Wednesday, but she still wasn’t ready to give up hope of playing when the Wegmans LPGA Championship begins Thursday.
Jutanugarn, 17, injured her right shoulder when she fell jogging off an incline at the 12th tee in a practice round Monday. She saw an orthopedic specialist Tuesday. She said X-rays showed “my bone moved” in the joint. She said the specialist advised she take off and rest the shoulder for two to four weeks.
Though Jutanugarn wasn’t well enough to hit any balls Wednesday, she decided she will wait until Thursday to decide if she should withdraw. She is scheduled to play in one of the championship’s marquee pairings with fellow teen phenom Lydia Ko and Michelle Wie with a 12:37 p.m. tee time in the first round.
“Yesterday, it hurt a lot, but today it’s a little better,” Jutanugarn said. “So, I am just waiting.”
Jutanugarn said she was excited when the pairings showed she would play with Wie.
“I’ve never played with Michelle Wie,” Jutanugarn said. “I’m so sad, it’s my chance to play with her.”
Jutanugarn said she doesn’t want to risk also missing the U.S. Women’s Open in three weeks and yet she really doesn’t want to miss this week’s major.
“It’s tough,” Jutanugarn said. “My world ranking came up to the top 20, and it makes me real confident.”
Jutanugarn has soared to No. 15 in the Rolex World Rankings. She isn’t an LPGA member, but she is making a big name for herself playing on sponsor exemptions and Monday qualifying. In five LPGA starts this year, she hasn’t finished worse than a tie for fourth place. She has collected $447,772 in money winnings. If she were a tour member, she would be sixth on the LPGA money list. She is a Ladies European Tour rookie who won her first event on that tour in March.
Rookie Breanna Elliott is first on the alternate list should Jutanugarn withdraw.