Date: January 29, 2012

Lydia hits tour records with total KO

Fourteen year old Lydia Ko sent records worldwide into a spin with victory at the 2012 Bing Lee/Samsung Women’s NSW Open at Oatlands Golf Club. Fresh from being crowned Australian Amateur champion last weekend, World Number 1 amateur Ko becomes the youngest winner of a professional golf tournament, male or female, in the history of golf. The New Zealander, who finished runner-up at the same event in 2011, produced a bogey-free round of 3-under par 69 to run out a four shot victor. Wales Becky Morgan finished in second place with a sensational final round of 6-under par 66, while Lindsey Wright and Kristie Smith tie for third. Ko had started the final round with a four shot cushion over Wright, and it was Wright who got off to the best start with a birdie at the second to close the gap to three shots. Both players went par-birdie over the next two holes before Wtight gave back the shot shead made up weith a bogey at the par-3 5th hole. Wright pulled with two shots with birdies at the 6th and 7th holes but that would be as close as she would get with the young New Zealander unflappable every time she was challenged. Ko made the turn at 13-under, Wright at 11-under while Morgan and Smith were making up ground in the groups ahead. The crunch hole seemed to be the 11th hole where Ko had overshot the green and had a very difficult up-and-down, while Wright had a difficult but makeable put from 10 feet. Ko hit a good, but not great chip and watched as Wright missed hers. She then calmly rolled in her own par putt from 5 feet and it seemed that was the calming influence on her round. Both players parred the next three holes but Ko put the first nail in the coffin when she made birdie at the 15th. Wright could only make par and the lead was three. Wright fell away from there with two more bogeys while Ko kept her blemish free round in tact with three pars to finish. By the time she walked on to the 18th tee she held a four shot advantage and it was only the formalities left. She completed her round with a regulation par, but for the crowd it was not quite regulation. Her tee shot on the short par-3 hit the flag and hole and ended off the left edge of the green. She two putted and it almost looked like she had amazed herself as she looked up at the crowd. After her round she said, I got more nervous as the day went on. When Lindsey got within two shots, I started to think back to last year with Caroline. Obviously, I am very happy to win, it means a lot to me. She also paid special mention to her coach Guy Wilson who has coached her for 8 years and also her caddy Steve Mowbray who she enjoyed working with. Speaking to this website after her Australian Amateur win, Ko said she was aware of her rising status in the game. I ve worked hard to become world number one. It’s an honour to be up there and there are so many other good players. Some people say you re world number one and you should shoot under par every time and I don t think that s the case, I think it s more about consistency. Ko will compete at the LPGA Tour season opening ISPS Handa Women&aposs Australian Open in a fortnight at Royal Melbourne Golf Club.