‘Hard to Express in Words’: The Emotional Reason Why LPGA Players Were Wearing Red Ribbons at the Tournament of Champions

Published 01/19/2023, 11:07 PM EST
PGA, Golf Herren PNC Championship – Final Round Dec 18, 2022 Orlando, Florida, USA Annika Sorenstam Walks up to the fourth tee box during the final round of the PNC Championship golf tournament at Ritz Carlton Golf Club Grande Lakes Orlando Course. Orlando Ritz Carlton Golf Club Grande Lakes Orlando Course Florida USA, EDITORIAL USE ONLY PUBLICATIONxINxGERxSUIxAUTxONLY Copyright: xReinholdxMatayx 20221218_lbm_mb4_019

The Hilton Grand Vacations Tournament of Champions, the first event of the 2023 LPGA Tour season began on January 19, 2023, in Orlando, Florida. And players like Brooke Henderson, Nelly Korda, and Annika Sorenstam impressed everyone with their display of great golf. Other than their pure form of golf, another thing that stood out for the spectators was the players wearing red ribbons, which was a mystery for everyone until the Tour legend Sorenstam revealed the reason behind it during the press meet after she finished a bogey-free round. 

Lately, LPGA has been in the headlines for all the wrong reasons. The year began with the Tour annoying the professionals and the fans alike with the way its management. Last year too, the organization faced problems and almost lost a huge deal. However, the players saved their Tour this time with heart-touching gestures. Even though not everyone was on board with this emotional action, it still attracted attention and questions about why the female golfers wore a red ribbon.

The heartfelt gesture by Annika Sorenstam and other LPGA Tour players

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During the interview with Sorenstam, the reporter asked the reason behind the red ribbons. She said it was their way of thanking the legendary golfer Kathy Whitworth, who passed away last month at 83. 

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Explaining the reason, Sorenstam said, according to asaptext.com“Yeah, what can we do to say thank you to Kathy Whitworth? It’s hard to express in words, other than maybe show emotion and show a sign that we really care what she has done. What a trailblazer. Really set the path for all of us.” The legendary golfer was sad not to have seen her enough. She said, “It just kind of happened so suddenly, unfortunately. I wish we could have seen her a little bit more. Anyway, she’s in our thoughts, she’s in our prayers, and I think she brought on this weather, so thanks, Kathy.”

Nelly Korda, Danielle Kang, and many more LPGA players were seen wearing a red ribbon in the highlights. They all wore it on their hats to show their love and respect for Whitworth. However, only some were on board with the gratitude plan. Not all golfers were wearing the ribbon, especially the non-American players. The leading names in the tournament, Canadian golfer Brooke Henderson, and South African golfer Ashleigh Buhai were not wearing a ribbon during the event. 

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What are your thoughts on this respectful gesture from the Tour players? 

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Saumya Yashawant

658 articles

A Commerce graduate who turned her passion into her profession, Saumya is a Golf writer at Essentially Sports. Having developed the love for the sport at a very young age, she watched Tiger Woods and caught inspiration from his legacy early on. Apart from Woods, she shares great admiration for her country's players like Vishwanathan Anand and Neeraj Chopra.

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