Aramco Team Series Jeddah: Who is vying for Pia Babnik’s crown at Royal Greens?
Aramco Team Series Jeddah defending champion Pia Babnik is back at Royal Greens this week and hoping that a focus on the team competition serves her well again.
The Slovenian teenager underlined her immense promise by winning the individual competition 12 months ago, her second professional title in a breakthrough year.
Still only 18, Babnik has gone from strength to strength in 2022, with a top-three finish at a major among her season highlights.
“I only have good memories of last year’s tournament,” she said. “I had a great team, a great amateur and I had great fun throughout the tournament.
“I was more focused on my team score but it turned out that that was even better for my Individual result.”
Babnik is one of 10 players in a high-quality field in Saudi Arabia who have already tasted victory at previous Aramco Team Series events.
English pair Bronte Law and Charley Hull are on that list, having respectively won the individual competitions in London earlier this year and New York last season.
Law will be hoping a return to the unique format of the $5m series sparks a turnaround in fortunes, having missed six cuts in 12 outings since her win.
By contrast, Hull is riding high in the world top 20 after claiming her second LPGA Tour title last month.
Compatriot Georgia Hall will also be among the contenders at Royal Greens, where she won in March at the Saudi Ladies International.
Alison Lee, who triumphed at Sotogrande last year, will aim to make it three American winners in a row in the series, following Lexi Thompson and Nelly Korda.
Belgian Manon de Roey is also seeking her second Aramco Team Series crown, having won the first leg of this season’s circuit in Bangkok.
Johanna Gustavsson, Nicole Garcia and Whitney Hillier are all former winning captains of the team competition at previous Aramco Team Series events and set to play this week.
And a woman who knows a thing or two about team contests, Suzann Pettersen, is coming out of retirement to play her first pro event since sinking the winning putt at the 2019 Solheim Cup.