Ko petitions to join LPGA

(SportsNetwork.com) - Teenager star Lydia Ko has petitioned the LPGA Tour for membership.

Per LPGA policy, players need to be 18-years-old to be a full member, but may petition commissioner Michael Whan to join the tour full-time before their 18th birthday.

Ko won't turn 17 until late April.

"The LPGA has received Lydia Ko's petition and the commissioner plans to review it upon his return from Asia. The decision on the petition will be solely up to the commissioner's discretion and upon his review, he will communicate directly with Lydia and her family," the LPGA said in a statement. "The LPGA does not comment publicly on petitions as they are a private matter between the player and the commissioner."

Ko has won the Canadian Women's Open each of the last two years, and won the 2013 New Zealand Women's Open, which was co-sanctioned by the Ladies European Tour and Australian LPGA. She also finished second at the Evian Championship, which became the LPGA Tour's fifth major this season.

With six top-10 finishes on the LPGA Tour in 2013, Ko's stellar play has helped her soar to fifth in the Rolex World Rankings.

Lexi Thompson petitioned the tour in 2011 and was granted full membership for 2012 when she was 17 years old. She won the Navistar LPGA Classic as a 16- year-old, a year after finishing second at the then-named Evian Masters.