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Schoolgirl makes golf history

January 17, 2004 15:38 IST

Fourteen-year-old schoolgirl Michelle Wie missed the cut at the Hawaiian Open despite making PGA Tour history.

Michelle WieThe amateur from Honolulu became the first female to shoot a sub-par round in a PGA Tour event when she fired a two-under 68 in the second round on Friday. But, agonisingly, her level-par total of 140 failed to make the cut by a single stroke.

Wie was attempting to become the first female to make the cut in a PGA Tour event since Babe Zaharias at the 1945 Los Angeles Open.

The teenager showed several signs of brilliance and arrived at the 18th needing an eagle on the par-five hole to qualify for the final two rounds.

Wie hit one of her best drives of the day 286 yards into the middle of the fairway. With 252 yards left, her second shot landed short of the green and then her chip for an eagle rolled right of the cup by four feet.

"I thought I just have to make a birdie to make it [the cut]," Wie told reporters.

"Even par, it usually makes it. I was like, I'll be very sad if the cut was one-under-par, and it was."


Wie rolled in a huge putt from 58 feet on the par-three seventh to make her first birdie of the day and followed up with another long 52-footer on the par-three 11th to move one-under for the round.

She also made two par saves from more than 10 feet.

It was the third time in less than a year that a female had played in a PGA Tour event.

Last year world number one Annika Sorenstam of Sweden and LPGA Tour regular Suzy Whaley played one tournament with the men, both missing the cut.

Wie has already proved she can play with the women, tying for ninth at the 2003 Nabisco Championship, the first of the year's four majors on the LPGA Tour.

The schoolgirl also made the cut five times on the LPGA Tour, including at the U.S. Women's Open.

She later won the U.S. Women's Public Links Championship, becoming the youngest tournament winner in the 108-year history of the U.S. Golf Association.

This week was not the first time she has played alongside the men. Last year, she missed the cut in two Nationwide and Canadian tour events, but it was clear the men would see more of Wie in the future.

"I do belong here. I belong on the LPGA; I belong on the PGA," Wie said. "I think I belong in both."

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