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Nasa Hataoka’s sixth career victory at the DIO Implant LA Open on Sunday puts her in elite company with Jessica Korda. Together they’re the winningest players on the LPGA without a major title.
Who are the best players without a major? Some on this list, like Hataoka and Korda, have won quite a bit already. Others, like rookie Atthaya Thitikul, make the list based on talent and potential.
Minjee Lee and Jennifer Kupcho are two players who played their way off of last year’s list. Lee won the 2021 Amundi Evian Championship, and Kupcho broke through with her first LPGA title at the Chevron Championship earlier this month.
Here’s a list of 10 players (with their Rolex Ranking) who are either primed to win a major or past due:
Nasa Hataoka (No. 6)
Nasa Hataoka of Japan poses for the media with DIO Implant LA Open Trophy after winning in the final round of the DIO Implant LA Open at Wilshire Country Club on April 24, 2022 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images)
Recent winner at the DIO Implant LA Open, the 23-year-old Japanese star has six career titles on the LPGA. Lost in a playoff at two major championships, most recently the U.S. Women’s Open at The Olympic Club last June. In 2018, Hataoka was eliminated on the first extra hole of a sudden-death playoff at the KPMG Women’s PGA, eventually won by Sung Hyun Park. Has total of five top-10s at the majors in 20 starts.
A three-time winner of the Japan Women’s Open, including a 2016 victory as an amateur.
Jessica Korda (No. 15)
Jessica Korda (USA) walks to the ninth tee during the third round of the women’s individual stroke play of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Summer Games at Kasumigaseki Country Club. (Photo: Michael Madrid-USA TODAY Sports)
A six-time winner on the LPGA, Korda posted her best finish in a major earlier this season when she finished runner-up to Jennifer Kupcho at the Chevron Championship. It marked her first top-3 finish in 54 starts.
Atthaya Thitikul (No. 5)
Atthaya Thitikul reacts on the final hole on the last day of the Honda LPGA Thailand at the Siam Country Club in Pattaya on May 9, 2021. (Photo by Lillian Suwanrumpha/AFP via Getty Images)
LPGA rookie captured her first tour victory at the JTBC Classic in March. She has four titles on the Ladies European Tour. The 19-year-old Thai phenom has eight career starts in the majors, including five as an amateur. Her best finish, a fifth, came at the 2021 Amundi Evian Championship.
Leona Maguire (No. 22)
Leona Maguire plays in the second round of the 2022 LPGA Drive On Championship at Crown Colony in Fort Myers on Friday, Feb. 4, 2022. She is tied for the lead at -13 under.
Won her first LPGA title in February at the LPGA Drive On Championship, becoming Ireland’s first tour winner. Finished in the top 15 in three major starts last year and was the Woman of the Match at the 2021 Solheim Cup for Europe. Tough suits her.
Celine Boutier (No. 17)
Celine Boutier follows her shot from the 13th tee during the third round of the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship golf tournament at the Atlanta Athletic Club. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hagy-USA TODAY Sports
A two-time winner on the LPGA, former Duke standout has four top-7s in the majors. Tied for fourth earlier this year at the Chevron. Frenchwoman’s 5-1-1 record at the Solheim Cup speaks to her abilities under pressure.
Austin Ernst (No. 40)
Austin Ernst of the United States walks down the 2nd fairway during the third round of the CP Womens Open at the Wascana Country Club on August 25, 2018 in Regina, Canada. (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)
Three-time winner on the LPGA hasn’t contended much in the big events. Her best finish in a major came at the 2018 Evian where she tied for second. Took a share of seventh at last year’s KPMG Women’s PGA.
Ally Ewing (No. 30)
United States’ Ally Ewing celebrates after a putt on the sixth hole during the singles matches at the Solheim Cup golf tournament, Monday, Sept. 6, 2021, in Toledo, Ohio. (AP Photo/David Dermer)
Former Mississippi State standout has taken her game to a new level, winning twice since October 2020. Had a string of seven consecutive top-25 finishes at the majors from 2019 to 2021.
Nanna Koerstz Madsen (No. 18)
Nanna Koerstz Madsen poses with the trophy on the 18th green after winning the final round of Honda LPGA Thailand at Siam Country Club Pattaya Old Course on March 13, 2022 in Pattaya, Thailand. (Photo by Thananuwat Srirasant/Getty Images)
Broke through with her first LPGA title in Thailand earlier this year, followed by a playoff loss to Thitikul at the JTBC Classic. Has three top-8 finishes in her last six starts at the majors.
Came into the 72nd hole at the AIG Women’s Open last year tied with Anna Nordqvist at Carnoustie. A closing double-bogey that included a shank on the 18th, however, dropped her to a share of fifth.
Amy Olson No. 66
Amy Olson takes a tee shot off the 3rd tee box during the final round of the U.S. Women’s Open golf tournament at Champions Golf Club. (Photo: Erik Williams-USA TODAY Sports)
One of those players who seems to fall in the tougher-the-better category, a winless Olson has twice finished in a share of second at the majors. The first one came at the 2018 Evian, where she double-bogeyed the 72nd hole to lose to Angela Stanford by a stroke.
Olson suffered a heartbreaking loss on Saturday night while contending at the 2020 U.S. Women’s Open, when her father-in-law died unexpectedly. She bravely fought hard to finish T-2 on a bitterly cold Monday finish.
Moriya Jutanuguarn (No. 48)
Moriya Jutanugarn of Thailand plays her shot from the second tee during a pro-am tournament prior to the HSBC Women’s World Championship at Sentosa Golf Club on March 02, 2022 in Singapore. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)
Two-time winner on the LPGA, the eldest Jutanugarn sister made 23 consecutive cuts at the majors until missing the weekend at the USWO at Olympic last year. She had two top 10s in the majors in 2021, giving her a career total of seven. She has three top 10s at Evian.