Amateur Valentina Rossi makes her LPGA Tour debut Thursday at the first major of the season, the Chevron Championship. Rossi, one of seven amateurs in contention, received an invitation to the prestigious event after winning the Women’s Amateur Latin America (WALA) in Argentina last November.
“Last week was a bit intense. I played in a college tournament, but I was too focused on The Chevron. I couldn’t stop thinking about the course, the practice days,” the 21-year-old Rosarina said of the challenges at The Club at Carlton Woods, The Chevron’s new venue in Woodlands, Texas.
“I’m very happy to be here and have Agostina by my side to deal with the anxiety and the environment,” Rossi said referring to her caddie this week: her coach Agostina Parmigiani. The partnership between Agostina and Valentina began a decade ago in Argentina and intensified in 2020, when the Michigan State University (MSU) junior moved to the Hernan Rey Golf Academy in Orlando – where Parmigiani coaches – during the COVID pandemic.
“My golf changed completely. It was great to practice and share time with other South American players. It feels like a home and a haven for many Hispanic college players,” Rossi said of his regular sessions at the academy, where he practices and competes with two compatriots and Latin America Amateur Championship (LAAC) winners, Abel Gallegos and Mateo Fernandez de Oliveira.
“At first I was in shock, and it was hard to believe I was going to play in those majors and with those players,” said Fernandez de Oliveira, whose victory in the LAAC earned him an invitation to the Masters, the U.S. Open and the Open Championship. After her recent experience at The Masters, Mateo has some advice for her friend Valentina: “We are all human beings, and we are competing with the best golfers for a reason. Trust yourself, play your own game and be yourself.”
Similar to Fernandez de Oliveira, Rossi’s WALA victory in November automatically qualified her for three majors: the Chevron, Amundi Evian Championship and AIG Women’s Open, as well as the U.S. Women’s Amateur and Hilton Grand Vacations ANNIKA Invitational. “It is a great achievement to have back-to-back winners of one of the most prestigious amateur events in the world. Valery Plata and Valentina Rossi have been wonderful representatives of our program,” MSU head coach Stacy Slobodnik-Stoll said of the winners of the first two editions of the WALA.
“I’m very happy to make my debut with another South American player,” said Rossi, who, after playing 18 practice holes on Monday, was finally able to sleep well knowing she knew the course and was ready for her first major.
Melissa Galbraith is the World News reporter for Globe Live Media. She covers all the major events happening around the World. From Europe to Americas, from Asia to Antarctica, Melissa covers it all. Never miss another Major World Event by bookmarking her author page right here.
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