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Ko back to defend CN Canadian Women's Open title

Fifteen-year-old Lydia Ko

DARRYL DYCK/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Defending champion Lydia Ko headlines a list of six past winners in the field for the 2013 CN Canadian Women's Open this summer.

The 16-year-old New Zealander has accepted an exemption to try and win back-to-back Canadian titles this August at the Royal Mayfair Golf Club in Edmonton.

Last year, Ko became the youngest ever winner of an LPGA Tour event when she captured the title at the Vancouver Golf Club. Despite having played just 17 professional events, Ko is ranked No. 18 in the women's world rankings.

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Hoping to prevent Ko from reaching the winner's circle again will be former champions Suzann Pettersen, Cristie Kerr, Brittany Lincicome, Michelle Wie and Katherine Hull.

Pettersen is an 11-time LPGA Tour winner including the 2009 CN Canadian Women's Open, while Kerr's victory at the 2006 event is one of 16 career LPGA Tour victories. Lincicome is a 5-time winner on the LPGA Tour including the 2011 Canadian title while Wie's 2010 title is one of two career victories. Hull's 2008 championship is also one of two in her LPGA career.

"In addition to being tremendous talents and great ambassadors for the LPGA Tour, our past champions represent an important part of our event's history," said Tournament Director Brent McLaughlin. "I'm sure each of them will be among the crowd favourites during this year's championship."

A field of 156 competitors will vie for the $2.0 million purse when the CN Canadian Women's Open makes its return to Royal Mayfair for the first time since 2007.

Tickets can be purchased online, at www.cncanadianwomensopen.com, or by phone, at 1-866-571-5742.

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