Four players, including Lexi Thompson, have been granted exemptions by the LPGA to play Q-School despite not meeting the age requirement.
Ariya Jutanugarn, the tour recently decided, will not join that group.
The 16-year-old’s petition was denied by the LPGA, preventing her from being able to compete in Q-School alongside her older sister, Moriya. Players must be 18 by Jan. 1 to be eligible for the process; Ariya Jutanugarn turns 17 on Nov. 23.
“I feel sad because … they tell me I’m too young,” Jutanugarn, No. 2 in the R&A World Amateur Ranking, told Golfweek magazine. “I think I have a chance to qualify at Q-School for the LPGA. I just want to try.”
Thompson, then 16, was granted a pass, as well as then-17-year-olds Jessica Korda, Morgan Pressel and Aree Song. Two months after Q-School, Thompson won the LPGA Navistar Classic and was granted a tour card for 2012.
Jutanugarn’s amateur resume ranks comparably to Thompson’s. She won the U.S. Girls’ Junior in 2011, qualified for the past two U.S. Women’s Open (missed cut) and twice was the low amateur at the Kraft Nabisco Championship, the LPGA’s first major of the year. After the tour’s decision, she will continue to play as an amateur.
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