Green to use LPGA event as major tune-up

Australia's Hannah Green wants to get all cylinders firing at the LPGA Tour's event in New Jersey as her Women's PGA Championship defence looms.

HANNAH GREEN of Australia plays a shot during the ISPS Handa Vic Open at 13th Beach Golf Club in Geelong, Australia.
HANNAH GREEN of Australia plays a shot during the ISPS Handa Vic Open at 13th Beach Golf Club in Geelong, Australia. Picture: Kelly Defina/Getty Images

Confident she has found her rhythm, Australian golf star Hannah Green will use this week's LPGA Tour event in New Jersey as a final tune-up for her looming major championship title defence.

In five tournaments since returning to the LPGA Tour from the COVID-19 shutdown, Green has showed glimpses of the brilliant form which last year saw her win a maiden major at the Women's PGA Championship and another LPGA Tour title in a breakout 2019 season.

World No.20 Green held a share of the lead with six holes to play at the LPGA Tour's recent Portland Classic - which she won last year - before crashing out of contention with four late bogeys to finish 12th.

But there has been enough form to give Green a reason to believe she can go back-to-back at the Women's PGA.

"I've had mixed results since we came back," Green told AAP.

"It's hard to go from not playing competitively in Perth to going out into tournaments, but I feel I'm now getting back to playing good tournament golf.

"Portland was not the final hew holes I wanted but I showed myself my game is good enough to win again and that's huge before defending my first major."

The LPGA Tour's Shoprite Classic near Atlantic City, New Jersey, will be Green's final hit-out before the Women's PGA, which was delayed from June to October because of the pandemic.

The 23-year-old Green challenged herself to use the tournament at Seaview GC to get all cylinders firing.

"I'm really looking forward to these next two events; I really like both golf courses," Green said, having played a practice round last week at Women's PGA venue Aronimink GC, outside Philadelphia.

"All parts of my game haven't been great; my putting hasn't been where it should be.

"This week in New Jersey is about getting my driver up to where it should be so that it is an advantage at the PGA Championship.

"Every part of my game has to be firing at a major, so I'll also have to be working hard on my short game this week."

World No.5 Minjee Lee will lead the Australian tilt at the Shoprite event, which begins on Friday AEST, while fellow Australians Sarah Kemp, Katherine Kirk, Su Oh and Sarah Jane Smith will also tee up.

The last Australian to win the LPGA Tour's Atlantic City stop was Karrie Webb in 2013.