Lydia Ko not ‘cocky’ as she chases elusive Singapore title
On Tuesday, Lydia Koh said she can’t afford to get “too cocky” despite being world No. 1 and one of the favorites for this week’s Women’s World Championship in Singapore.
The 25-year-old New Zealander, who got married in December, started the year happily by winning two weeks ago in Saudi Arabia.
But while she’s in great shape and is the reigning LPGA Player of the Year, the Women’s World Championship has eluded her so far.
“You can never be too cocky about what a ranked player you are because it’s so crowded at the top,” Ko said ahead of the tournament, which kicks off Thursday at Sentosa Golf Club.
“Everyone is playing really well and you can’t say, ‘I’ll be there forever,’” said the Kiwi, who finished sixth last week in Thailand.
“When I was younger, it seemed to me that being number one meant that I had to win or fight week after week, but this is not necessarily the case,” she added.
“Everyone will have their ups and downs, but you have to manage it by making sure those lows aren’t super low and you don’t get too high off the highs.”
Ko’s best performance in Singapore came in the 2015 season, where she finished second, and knows her short game will be the formula for success this week.
“Obviously, a good serve here is going to be essential, especially when you have those kinds of birdie opportunities or when you have to make those ups and downs,” she said.
“So having to put together four rounds that have a little more consistency is going to be a big key for me,” she said.
Like Ko, Brooke Henderson also got off to a strong start to his campaign, winning the LPGA season opener in Orlando, Florida.
The Canadian has won at least one title in eight of her nine LPGA seasons and is looking forward to continuing that winning streak in Singapore.
“It was the beginning of a dream. I’m always trying to make small improvements and try to get a little better,” said the 25-year-old.
Also among the applicants will be Ko Jin-young from South Korea.
She hopes her mental preparation will pay off as she aims to be the first player to successfully defend her title in the tournament.
“I know there will be pressure, but I don’t want to think too much about it,” she said.
“I just need to meditate as it has worked well for me in the past and has allowed me to focus more on my swing and golf shots.”