By Maureen Shanahan
IMG Performance Academy
Anna Nordqvist is back in America for the moment after her appointment as the first Scandinavian woman to compete in the LPGA’s event in Saudi Arabia as part of the event’s first Saudi Arabian Ladies Professional Golf Association tournament that started Friday. Her decision surprised many, as Nordqvist was courted to compete in the same way Adam Scott was when the Australian was faced with making the same decision he did for the PGA’s event in the desert kingdom this week.
Nordqvist was interviewed by reporters in the Saudi International clubhouse on Friday, and she explained the process by which she made the decision to join the LPGA tour and not play in the Saudi event. As she said, “You can’t spend all this time on an airplane going, ‘Oh, we’re going to play in Saudi Arabia. Oh, we’re going to play in China.’ It wasn’t a very natural way for me to feel at all. That wasn’t the choice I wanted to make.”
She said that there were many different reasons, including a potentially huge financial difference, but said that she ultimately decided to return to the LPGA tour because she was “worried about the unknown consequences of missing out on golf at this moment when I’m going to go out for maybe the first time to the states.”
Having played seven LPGA events during the 2017 season, she will return to play three this season and do the same for the next three. Her commitment is temporary, and Nordqvist said, “Hopefully, in a little bit of time, things can change, and now it’s about going on the circuit and trying to enjoy it.”
But then again, one can’t help but wonder, once again, if perhaps there will be another LPGA driver trying to put together a bit of a Hail Mary play to join the event.