Who's who: Ayako Okamoto

  • Photo of Ayako Okamoto
  • japan.png
  • Photo of Ayako Okamoto
  • japan.png

Who's who: Ayako Okamoto

  • Name:

    Ayako Okamoto
  • Country:

    Japan
  • Born:

    April 2, 1951 in Akitsu, Hiroshima, Japan.
  • Original/Home Club:

  • Occupation:

    Professional golfer
  • Turned Pro:

    1975

Roll of Honour

Total professional wins (62), including LPGA of Japan Tour (44), LPGA Tour (17) and Ladies European Tour (2).

Did you know?

Okamoto, together with fellow World Golf Hall of Famer "Chako" Higuchi, dominated Japanese women's golf in the 1970s, 80s and 90s. In addition to her "superstar" status in Japan, she also enjoyed considerable success on the LPGA Tour with 17 wins, but no majors amongst them. Okamoto won the Women's British Open in 1984, before it was recognised as a major championship.

Top tournaments won by Ayako Okamoto

1992
America
DuPont CC
205 (-8)
$112,500
McDonald's

Category

America

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Venue

DuPont CC

Score

205 (-8)

Prize money

$112,500

Title sponsor

McDonald's

Played as the McDonald's Championship. Second-placed Pat Bradley (USA), Brandie Burton (USA) and Deb Richard (USA) finished 3 shots behind Okamoto (Jpn), who recorded the last of her 17 LPGA Tour victories in this 54-hole rain-shortened event. [DuPont CC, Wilmington, Delaware].

1990
Europe
274 (-14)
£13,500
Lufthansa

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Score

274 (-14)

Prize money

£13,500

Title sponsor

Lufthansa

Played as the Lufthansa Ladies German Open (Aug 9-12). Okamoto (Jpn) beat Laurette Maritz (RSA) and Cindy Rarick (USA) in a playoff. [GC Wörthsee, nr Munich, Germany].

Category

America

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Score

210 (-6)

Prize money

$63,750

Title sponsor

Sara Lee

Played as the Sara Lee Classic. Second-placed Betsy King (USA), JoAnne Carner (USA), Dawn Coe (Can), Pat Bradley (USA) and Colleen Walker (USA) finished 1 shot behind Okamoto (Jpn). [General's Retreat course, Hermitage GC, Old Hickory, Nashville, TN].

1989
America
Corning CC
272 (-12)
$48,750
Corning

Category

America

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Venue

Corning CC

Score

272 (-12)

Prize money

$48,750

Title sponsor

Corning

Played as the LPGA Corning Classic. Second-placed Beth Daniel (USA) finished 6 shots behind Okamoto (Jpn), who recorded her 15th LPGA Tour win. [Corning CC, Corning, nr Elmira, New York].

1988
America
213 (-2)
$45,000
Orient Leasing

Category

America

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Score

213 (-2)

Prize money

$45,000

Title sponsor

Orient Leasing

Played as the Orient Leasing Hawaiian Ladies Open. Second-placed Deb Richard (USA) and JoAnne Carner (USA) finished 1 shot behind Okamoto (Jpn). [Fazio course, Turtle Bay Resort, Kahuku, Oahu, Hawaii].

1988
America
Bethesda CC
206 (-7)
$33,750
x

Category

America

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Venue

Bethesda CC

Score

206 (-7)

Prize money

$33,750

Title sponsor

x

Played as the Greater Washington Open. Second-placed Beth Daniel (USA) and Connie Chillemi (USA) finished 1 shot behind Okamoto (Jpn). [Bethesda CC, Bethesda, Maryland].

1988
America
StoneRidge, CA
272 (-12)
$33,750
Inamori

Category

America

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Venue

StoneRidge, CA

Score

272 (-12)

Prize money

$33,750

Title sponsor

Inamori

Played as the San Diego Inamori Golf Classic. Second-placed Colleen Walker (USA) finished 1 shot behind defending champion Okamoto (Jpn). [StoneRidge CC, Poway, nr San Diego, CA].

1987
Awards
68 pts
n/a
LPGA Tr

Category

Awards

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Venue

Score

68 pts

Prize money

n/a

Title sponsor

LPGA Tr

Okamoto (Jpn) won the LPGA Tour Player of the Year Award, based on a points system for top 10 finishes and performance in Majors.

1987
America
StoneRidge, CA
275 (-13)
$30,000
Kyocera

Category

America

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Venue

StoneRidge, CA

Score

275 (-13)

Prize money

$30,000

Title sponsor

Kyocera

Played as the Kyocera Inamori Golf Classic. Second-placed Betsy King (USA) finished 1 shot behind Okamoto (Jpn). [StoneRidge CC, Poway, nr San Diego, CA].

Category

America

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Score

208 (-8)

Prize money

$45,000

Title sponsor

x

Played as the Lady Keystone Open. Second-placed Laurie Rinker (USA) finished 1 shot behind Okamoto (Jpn). [West course, Hershey CC, Hershey, PA].

1987
America
PineIsle Resort
282 (-6)
$81,500
Nestle

Category

America

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Venue

PineIsle Resort

Score

282 (-6)

Prize money

$81,500

Title sponsor

Nestle

Played as the Nestle World Championship. Second-placed Betsy King (USA) finished in second place behind Okamoto (Jpn). [PineIsle Resort, Lake Lanier, Georgia; now called Legacy Course on Lake Lanier].

1987
Awards
$466,034
see Score
LPGA Tr

Category

Awards

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Venue

Score

$466,034

Prize money

see Score

Title sponsor

LPGA Tr

Okamoto (Jpn) won the LPGA Tour 1987 Money List, with earnings of $466,034 on the Tour. Betsy King (USA) was second with $460,385; Jane Geddes (USA) was third with $396,818.

1987
America
Navesink CC
215 (-4)
$33,750
Chrysler

Category

America

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Venue

Navesink CC

Score

215 (-4)

Prize money

$33,750

Title sponsor

Chrysler

Played as the Chrysler-Plymouth Classic. Second-placed Jane Geddes (USA) and Colleen Walker (USA) finished 2 shots behind Okamoto (Jpn). [Navesink CC, Middletown, New Jersey].

1986
Asia
Tsukuba CC
140
$16,000
Nichirei Foods

Category

Asia

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Venue

Tsukuba CC

Score

140

Prize money

$16,000

Title sponsor

Nichirei Foods

Played as the Nichirei Ladies Cup (Oct 31-Nov 2; individual low score prize within the US-Japan team match). Sandra Palmer (USA) and Juli Inkster (USA) finished in second place behind Okamoto (Jpn). [Tsukuba CC, Tsukuba, Ibaraki, Japan].

1986
America
280 (-8)
$30,000
Elizabeth Arden

Category

America

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Score

280 (-8)

Prize money

$30,000

Title sponsor

Elizabeth Arden

Played as the Elizabeth Arden Classic. Second-placed Muffin Spencer-Devlin (USA) finished 1 shot behind Okamoto (Jpn). [Soffer course, Turberry Isle Resort, Aventura, FL; at the time called the South course].

1986
America
207 (-9)
$30,000
Cellular One-PING

Category

America

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Score

207 (-9)

Prize money

$30,000

Title sponsor

Cellular One-PING

Played as the Cellular One-Ping LPGA Golf Championship (Sept 5-7). Second-placed Colleen Walker (USA) and defending champion Nancy Lopez (USA) finished 6 shots behind Ayako Okamoto (Jpn). [Columbia Edgewater CC, Portland, Oregon].

1984
Europe
289 (-3)
£25,000
Hitachi

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Score

289 (-3)

Prize money

£25,000

Title sponsor

Hitachi

Played as the Hitachi British Women's Open (Oct 3-6; a GB&I WPGA/LPGA Trs event). Second-placed Betsy King (USA) and Dale Reid (Scot) finished 11 shots behind Okamoto (Jpn). [Duke's course, Woburn GC, nr Milton Keynes, Bucks].

1984
America
275 (-14)
$30,000
J&B Whisky

Category

America

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Score

275 (-14)

Prize money

$30,000

Title sponsor

J&B Whisky

Played as the J&B Scotch Pro-Am. Second-placed Donna White (USA) finished 5 shots behind Okamoto (Jpn). [Wynn Las Vegas, Nevada; at the time known as Desert Inn CC. Earlier rounds also at Las Vegas CC].

1984
America
Indianapolis CC
281 (-7)
$37,500
Mayflower

Category

America

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Venue

Indianapolis CC

Score

281 (-7)

Prize money

$37,500

Title sponsor

Mayflower

Played as the Mayflower Classic. Second-placed Judy Clark (USA; Judy Dickinson from late-1985) and Donna White (USA) finished 2 shots behind Okamoto (Jpn). [CC of Indianapolis, Indianapolis, Indiana].

1983
America
Locust Hill CC
282 (-6)
$30,000
x

Category

America

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Venue

Locust Hill CC

Score

282 (-6)

Prize money

$30,000

Title sponsor

x

Played as the Rochester International. Okamoto (Jpn) beat Kathy Whitworth (USA) and Donna White (USA) with a birdie at the third playoff hole. [Locust Hill CC, Pittsford, Rochester, NY].

Category

America

Winner (holder)

Okamoto, Ayako

Score

281 (-7)

Prize money

$18,750

Title sponsor

x

Played as the Arizona Copper Classic. First-time LPGA Tour winner Okamoto (Jpn) beat Sally Little (RSA/USA) with a birdie at the second playoff hole. [North course, Randolph GC, Tucson, AZ].

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