Lexi Thompson to make PGA Tour debut at Shriners Children’s Open

Lexi Thompson will add an impressive bullet point to her resume next week as she tees it up on the PGA Tour.

The 11-time LPGA Tour winner will become the seventh woman to play against the men on Tour as she plays in next week’s Shriners Children’s Open after accepting a sponsor’s exemption.

“I’m hopeful that my ability to play with the men next week at the Shriners Children’s Open sends a great message to the young women that you can chase your dream regardless of how hard it is,” Thompson said in a statement. “I cannot wait to come to the city of Las Vegas and I’m grateful to Shriners Children’s for this opportunity to spend the week alongside these inspirational kids.”

Thompson, 28, is coming off a T8 finish — her best of the season — at the NW Arkansas Championship and a 3-1-0 performance showing at the Solheim Cup. She’s made just four cuts in 12 starts on the LPGA Tour this season.

“We are thrilled to welcome Lexi to the 2023 tournament,” Shriners Children’s Open executive director Patrick Lindsey said in a statement. “We are eager to have Lexi on the course and continue to break through barriers.”

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Thompson has previously played alongside the men six times in the QBE Shootout, an unofficial Tour event taking place each December, but this will be her first FedEx Cup event. She will join Babe Zaharias, Shirley Spork, Annika Sorenstam, Suzy Whaley, Michelle Wie West and Brittany Lincicome as the only other women to play in PGA Tour events.

This will not be the first time Thompson has made history. In 2007, she became the youngest golfer to ever play in the U.S. Women’s Open when she teed it up at Pine Needles. She later became the LPGA Tour’s youngest winner in 2011 when she won the Navistar LPGA Classic at the age of 16 (a 15-year-old Lydia Ko broke her record in 2012).

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