Slieve Russell's Leona Maguire and Spain’s María Parra will have the opportunity to play in a Ladies European Tour event in 2016 thanks to an agreement between the LET and the European Golf Association (EGA).
Part of the LET’s strategy is to connect with organisations who share its values to help promote, foster and develop young talent, helping to create a smooth pathway from grassroots to professional golf.
World No.1 amateur Maguire, who finished second in the ISPS HANDA Ladies European Masters in July, capped a tremendous season by winning the 2015 EGA Women’s Amateur Ranking, while Parra also experienced success, with the highlight her win at the International European Ladies' Amateur Championship.
Both players have also competed in the PING Junior Solheim Cup, Leona in 2009 and 2011 and María in 2015. The team match play event between Europe and the United States is another key project in the Ladies European Tour’s development programme.
Maguire said: “This year has been amazing and it was great to see the hard work I put in, especially in my short game, pay off. It is a huge honour for me to be ranked no.1 in the European Ranking and also the World Ranking, but I know there are so many great players right now and in order to stay up there I will need to continue developing.
"It was a great experience to play in the ISPS HANDA Ladies European Masters and the Evian Championship this year and I am delighted to receive another chance to play a LET event in 2016 to get even more experience playing with the professionals and develop as a golfer.”
As the winner the McCormack Medal as the top female amateur in the world rankings at the end of 2016, Maguire will receive exemptions into next year's US. Women’s Open at CordeValle in Califormia and the Ricoh Women's British Open, provided she remains an amateur.
The LET’s Development Director Mike Round commented: “Giving LET invites to Maria and Leona is our way of congratulating them for their impressive achievements. It’s important that the LET works in partnership with the EGA and National Golf Federations to provide opportunities that support the programmes for the development of elite amateurs.
"When Maria and Leona played in the PING Junior Solheim Cup, it was clear that they have the potential to be great role models for women’s golf and we look forward to following their progress in the sport."
Maguire and Parra will be invited to play in one of the LET’s premier tournaments next year, which will be named after the publication of the 2016 international schedule.