An impressive season of amateur golf has taken Canada's Monet Chun to one of the most storied courses in the world.
Chun, from Richmond Hill, Ont., teed off at the Augusta National Women's Amateur on Wednesday, the lone Canadian entry in the third edition of the tournament. She earned her way into the field after being a medallist as part of Michigan's championship team at the 2022 Big Ten Women's golf tournament and winning that year's Canadian Women’s Amateur Championship.
"I do think everything just kind of came together as steps and one led to the other," said Chun as she travelled to Augusta, Ga. "The U.S. Am and then the CP Women's Open all came after winning the Canadian Am and the Canadian Am came after the Big 10 win.
"So everything came step by step, but it definitely does feel like the Augusta invitation came after my whole season last year."
Chun's Canadian Am win granted her first-ever CP Women's Open appearance at Ottawa Hunt and Golf Club last August.
Her impressive 2022 also included being a runner-up at the U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship, a ninth-place finish at the ANNIKA Intercollegiate, reaching the Round of 16 at the North & South Women’s Amateur and a tie for fifth at the Women’s Orlando International Amateur.
All those accomplishments contributed to her invitation to the Augusta National Women's Amateur, which started in 2019. The 22-year-old Chun said that playing in the relatively new tournament quickly became a goal of hers once it was established.
"Going out and representing Canada in the first couple of years of the tournament is such a huge responsibility and just a huge opportunity for myself," said Chun.
Her sister Adele is serving as her caddy at Augusta and Golf Canada's head women's coach Salimah Mussani is also at the course. Chun's keeping her goals simple despite the magnitude of the event.
"I'm just gonna go out there and try to enjoy it as best as possible. It's an incredible event," said Chun. "Obviously, results are one thing, but going out there and enjoying myself because it's such a great, well-organized tournament."
LPGA TOUR — Maddie Szeryk of London, Ont., started the LPGA Tour season with a career-best tie for seventh at the Drive On Championship on Sunday. She's 40th on the Race to CME Globe rankings heading into Thursday's DIO Implant LA Open at the Palos Verdes Golf Club. Maude-Aimee Leblanc of Sherbrooke, Que., is also in the field in Palos Verdes Estates, Calif.
EPSON TOUR — Selena Costabile of Thornhill, Ont., and Hamilton's Alena Sharp are the Canadian entries in the Casino Del Sol Golf Classic in Tucson, Ariz., this week. Costabile is 44th on the Race for the Card, the second-tier tour's money list. Sharp sits 65th.
PGA TOUR — Nick Taylor of Abbotsford, B.C., is the highest-ranked Canadian at this week's Valero Texas Open. He sits 24th on the FedEx Cup standings. Taylor will be joined at TPC San Antonio by former champion Corey Conners of Listowel, Ont., Michael Gligic of Burlington, Ont., and Taylor Pendrith of Richmond Hill, Ont.
KORN FERRY TOUR — Roger Sloan of Merritt, B.C., is 56th on the Korn Ferry Tour's points list as he builds toward earning full status on the top-tier PGA Tour. He's in the field at this week's Astara Chile Classic with Toronto's Richard Jung and Chris Crisologo of Richmond, B.C. The second-tier tour's event is at the Prince of Wales Country Club in Santiago, Chile.
PGA TOUR LATINOAMERICA — Myles Creighton of Digby, N.S., is the top-ranked Canadian at JHSF Aberto do Brasil at Fazenda Boa Vista in Porto Feliz, Brazil. He's ninth in the Totalplay Cup standings. Six other Canadians are in the field at the third-tier tour's event.
TPC TORONTO — TPC Toronto at Osprey Valley announced on Monday a major enhancement project to its parkland-style North course and practice facilities. Renowned golf course architect Ian Andrew will lead the renovation, which will see the North enhanced as a venue for high-level championship competition. The project will begin in early August.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 29, 2023.
John Chidley-Hill, The Canadian Press