Jin Young Ko goes back-to-back — Must-click women’s golf links
The IX: Golf Thursday with Addie Parker, Mar. 9, 2023
Welcome back to another Golf Thursday! This was a busy week in the golf world. The LPGA has wrapped up their time in Asia for a bit and players are headed stateside for a little while. Epson officially kicked off its tournament schedule in Florida. Spring will be here before we know it, which means college golf playoffs are right around the corner. We are just weeks away from the first major tournaments of the year. The Masters kick off in early April, and the Chevron Championship follows just a couple weeks later. But with all the chaos swirling around, I think it’s important to rely on my links this week and focus on something, or someone rather — Jin Young Ko.
The former world No. 1 is no stranger to being the topic of our Golf Thursdays, but over the past 18 months (especially the past 12) we have seen the humility of Ko shine brighter than the Aurora Borealis.
“I think it brings good luck for me because it’s really hard to see the Northern Lights when you go to Finland or Iceland, but I take just one day that I saw the Northern Lights, and so it was lucky.”In her post-win conference, Ko talked about how she pushed back her winter training in December to rest her wrist and went to Europe to see the Northern Lights in Finland and tour The Louvre in Paris.
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Winning is hard. Even when the weather is perfect, when your swing feels effortless, and you’re in you flow state…winning is hard. Now imagine, the place you’re playing in has an entire month’s worth of rain in a single week, you’re hoping that your body can hold out after recovering from an injury, and you have none other than Nelly Korda breathing down your neck. Jin Young Ko did all of these things and she did do without so much as batting an eye. She admits that she has no poker face, but when it comes down to it, Ko is stone cold in the big moments.
Ko has kept the details of her wrist injury quiet, but with how much it impacted her both mentally and physically last season, it left us fans wondering if we would ever see her get back to the form we had grown accustomed to.
At the end of the 2021 season, we were all convinced that 2022 would be a battle between Ko and Korda. When we saw those two names atop a leaderboard, the rest of the field was playing for third. It would have been a true rivalry in women’s golf and we were beyond ready for it. But both players had their issues with their health and sidelined them for months. The final round of HSBC gave us a little piece of what we all wanted to see last year, and what we are hoping to see more of as Ko gains strength and confidence in her wrist.
But this level of play has been manifesting for Ko for a while. She’s been rehabbing, she reconnected with her former coach Si Woo Lee in Vietnam and while in Thailand she posted a final round 64, to finish top-10.
Similar to Lydia Ko, who has talked about golf in such a freeing way over the past 2 season, Jin Young Ko has found peace of mind since rehabbing her wrist.
“I’m just trying to enjoy the course and I just want to hear birds song or singing, and I just wanted to feel wind and air.”Jin Young Ko on what she was feeling while playing the final holes at the HSBC Women’s World Championship.
Between reconnecting with her old coach, refocusing on the golf and the elements surrounding her, and good omens tied to the Northern Lights, I think Jin Young Ko is finding her new recipe for success. If she’s able to win while still feeling unsure in her new swing…I’m beyond excited to see what her at full confidence will look like especially as the majors are rapidly approaching.
This week in women’s golf
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Five at The IX: The Kordas at HSBC
Before the start of the HSBC Women’s World Championship, sisters Nelly and Jessica Korda sat down with HSBC host Kate Burton to talk about their journeys in golf, the number of times each day they call mom and their tennis role models.
Watch the video here!
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|By: Addie Parker, @addie_parker, The IX
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