Jack Nicklaus: Augusta National Women's Amateur Championship 'fantastic' for golf

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"This is great for golf, and great for Augusta", Rice said. She was an interested, and smiling, spectator in the press conference as Chairman Ridley revealed Augusta's newest event to the world.

Chairman Fred Ridley announced the new women's event on the eve of 82nd Masters Tournament.

The 30 highest ranked players on the women's amateur world rankings will also be eligible after the top 30 players from the United States (not otherwise exempt) are invited.

Clifford Roberts, who co-founded Augusta National with legendary golfer Bobby Jones, was a racist who vowed to keep black men out of the Masters.

Invitations will be sent to winners of the U.S. Women's Amateur, Ladies' British Open Amateur, Women's Amateur Asia-Pacific, U.S. Girls' Junior, Girls' British Open Amateur, Girls Junior PGA Championship, according to Golfweek.

The new event - the Augusta National Women's Amateur Championship - will see the best 72 players in the world take part, with the first two rounds taking place at the Champions Retreat Golf Club in Augusta.

"We do hope this will attract a significant number of people who want to come to Augusta National, Ridley said". The process took several years, and while it was meant mostly to give Augusta National more space along its perimeter, it also allows for the 510-yard 13th to be lengthened.

Augusta National Golf Club has had a reputation of keeping with tradition even to the point of being stubborn about that.

"We plan to have a very distinctive award for the victor of this event, and we think it time that will become iconic as well", Ridley said. "I think over time this will also be a great benefit to the women's professional game as well". We got to work on that.

Remaining positions will be filled through invitations from the Augusta National Women's Amateur Championship Committee.

Condoleeza Rice was handing out awards at the Drive, Chip and Putt Championship at Augusta National on Sunday.

"Mike understands our motivations for doing this", Ridley said. I think it's a superb opportunity.

Ridley said the plan is televise the event globally and set up a lottery for tickets.