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Tee it up: Women ready to start new season

Lexi Thompson
Getty Images
PEBBLE BEACH, CA - FEBRUARY 12: Ricky Barnes ponders a putt on the first hole during round two of the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am at Pebble Beach Golf Links on February 12, 2010 in Pebble Beach, California. (Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images)  - 

Will Lexi Thompson manage a third womens professional title before she turns 17 on Feb. 10?

Will Stacy Lewis get off to a fast start as she prepares to defend her title in the years first major championship?

Will 14-year-old New Zealand amateur Lydia Ko make a run at back-to-back pro titles?

The LPGA might not start for another week, but womens golf feels like its cranking up with the Gold Coast RACV Australian Ladies Masters in Queensland beginning Thursday.

Thompson, Lewis, Christina Kim, Amanda Blumenherst and Candie Kung are among 25 Americans in this field with the Ladies European Tour co-sanctioning. Katherine Hull leads the Australian contingent. European Solheim Cup members Sophie Gustafson, Laura Davies, Melissa Reid, Caroline Hedwall and Christel Boeljon are also in the field. So is reigning U.S. Womens Open champion So Yeon Ryu.

Rolex world No. 1 Yani Tseng won this event a year ago, but she isnt back to defend her title. She will make her start in the LPGA season opener at the ISPS Honda Womens Australian Open next week. Tseng also won that event last year, when it was co-sanctioned by the LET.