Natasha Andrea Oon didn’t know what to expect at the Maybank Championship. The Malaysia native hasn’t teed it up in her home country since becoming an Epson Tour winner, earning her LPGA Tour card for the 2024 season and being named the 2023 Gaelle Truet Rookie of the Year. It’s also her first start on the LPGA Tour since the 2022 Portland Classic and her first tournament appearance since the Epson Tour Championship in early October.
And it’s her first time competing in Malaysia since turning professional last summer, making this homecoming a particularly special one for the 22-year-old.
“I had a really good year last year. Going out on tour, being a first-time pro and just getting the ins and outs of pro life was very difficult for me,” said the 2023 Epson Tour rookie in her pre-tournament press conference at the Maybank Championship. “Getting that Tour card and knowing that I'll be playing on (the LPGA) Tour next year fully and playing my first LPGA tournament as a confirmed LPGA Tour member in Malaysia is a full-circle moment because playing here gave me a lot of exposure to this kind of lifestyle when I was young. It changed my life.”