“I would love to play again. I was happy to play until the end with the support of the fans.”
“Smile Candy” Ibomi, 35, has ended her 13-year career on the Japan Ladies Professional Golf (JLPGA) Tour.
The Japanese golfer played her farewell event on Tuesday at the JLPGA Tour’s Nobuta Group Masters GC Ladies (200 million yen purse) at Masters Golf Club near Kobe, Hyogo, Japan.
After an 11-over-par first round, Ibomi rebounded with an even-par second round to finish in a tie for 99th place.
Ibomi was in tears from the moment she stepped onto the teeing area on the 1st hole, and was cheered on by about 1,000 fans until the end. Despite the fact that it was a weekday and it was raining, many fans followed her. They wore her favorite pink T-shirt and chased her with towels. Iwomi also wore a pink vest over her white pique shirt, and her fellow players Momoko Ueda and Sakura Koiwai wore pink golf wear to show their support for her final match.
To commemorate her retirement and new beginning, the tournament organizer, Nobuta Group, set up a special “Iwomi Pavilion” in front of the clubhouse during the tournament. The Pavilion displayed trophies and photos of Iwomi’s tournaments and sold merchandise to commemorate her retirement. As soon as the doors opened, fans and colleagues alike came to buy merchandise to commemorate her retirement.
More than 80 players from the JLPGA Tour came together to celebrate Lee’s end. Bae Sun-woo, a fellow Korean, said, “It’s sad and lonely. I wanted her to play a little longer, but it’s heartbreaking to hear that she’s leaving.”스포츠토토
A former money winner on the Korean Ladies Professional Golf Association (KLPGA) Tour, Lee joined the JLPGA Tour in 2011 and became a favorite of the Japanese public, sparking the “Bomi-chan Syndrome”.
After winning the 2010 Korea Ladies Professional Golf Association (KLPFA) Tour money title and the grand prize, Lee moved to the JLPGA Tour in 2011 and went on to win 21 times, including her first victory at the Yokohama Tire PRGR Ladies Cup in March 2012 and the CAT Ladies in 2017.
In 2015, her fifth year in Japan, she won the money list, and the following year, in 2016, she won the money list for the second consecutive year. In 2015, she earned ¥23,049,7057 in prize money, becoming the first player on the JLPGA Tour to break the ¥200 million mark, and in her 13 years of playing 288 tournaments, she earned ¥86,632,264 in career prize money.
The retirement ceremony was held in the clubhouse due to the heavy rain that day. He will have another retirement ceremony with fans on the 22nd.