Annika Sorenstam is Augusta National Golf Club’s newest female member, bringing that (known) total to seven. She’s also the first former LPGA player to accept an invitation.
But a fellow legend hopes current and future tour players get a chance to play competitively at ANGC.
On Wednesday, Sorenstam, Billie Jean King and racing trailblazer Lyn St. James were promoting Parity Week by Gainbridge, which includes The Annika, Sorenstam’s LPGA tournament, Nov. 9-12.
Sorenstam, it had previously been confirmed by chairman Fred Ridley, became an Augusta National member when the season opened on Oct. 1.
“I'm extremely honored,” Sorenstam said during the virtual roundtable. “It was a surprise. I must say that. I was just so excited. One of the happiest days in my golf life.
“As you know, it's super new so I am a total rookie. I'm just learning the ropes, so I'm not really sure where this will lead. I'm thrilled and excited about the opportunity to not just play the course, but just to get to know the members.”
King, a tennis Hall of Fame member and tireless advocator of gender equality, is hoping Annika’s addition will lead to even more opportunity.
“My prayer for Augusta is to have a women's LPGA event,” King said. “That's been my prayer. I know they have the amateur girls [Augusta National Women’s Amateur], but I want to see a pro tournament.
“I hope that happens. I think you will make a big difference. You stand for so much and people listen to you and appreciate you.”
Sorenstam was then asked what she thought of a women’s Masters Tournament.
“Don't put her on the hot spot yet,” King said. “Got to give her a couple years, man. She's got to get to know the members first. Get to know how it works.
“It’s a lot of hard work. It’s fun, you keep learning.”