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Lydia Ko, 16, accepted onto LPGA Tour
New Zealand's teenage sensation golfer Lydia Ko has been given full membership of the LPGA Tour despite being at 16 two years under the minimum age requirement.

The teen sensation had revealed earlier this month she was petitioning the LPGA Tour to waive its age limit and allow her to turn pro.

Ko added: "I know that becoming a member is not only about performing well, but dealing with responsibilities very well.

"Women's golf is growing day by day and I would love to be able to inspire other girls to take up the game, and go for it. I believe this is only the start to my career and I have many new things to learn along the way."

"It has always been my dream goal to play on the LPGA, and play against the world's best players," Ko said.

Having already become a two-time winner on the LPGA Tour and contending in last fifth and final major championship, at the Evian Championship where she finished runner-up, Ko is also the youngest ever winner on the LPGA Tour having triumphed at the Canadian Women's Open in August last year at just 15 years old.

Ko was preeminent on the amateur stage where she recently received the McCormack Medal as the world's leading women amateur for a third straight year.

LPGA Tour Commissioner Mike Whan, who also granted Lexi Thompson and Michelle Wie opportunities ahead of their minimum age requirement, is the man who Ko convinced to waive their restrictions.

Whan said: "It is not often the LPGA welcomes a rookie who is already a back-to-back LPGA Tour champion."

Ko would have earned almost $1 million this year had she been pro, and her mother, Tina Hyon, said that her daughter would play as a pro in the LPGA Titleholders in November in Naples, Florida. She also might play in the Lorena Ochoa Invitational in Mexico.

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