October 21, 2022 10:32
World No. 1 golfer Ko Jin-young got off to a poor start at the BMW Ladies Championship on Thursday as she returned to the LPGA Tour for the first time in two months after suffering a wrist injury.
Ko carded an eight-over 80 in the first round of the event at Oak Valley Country Club in Wonju, Gangwon Province, her worst round since she made her LPGA debut in 2018.
Her performance contrasted starkly with that of world No. 2 Atthaya Thitikul of Thailand, who was in the same group with Ko and shot a nine-under 63 to take the lead, making it likely that she will overtake Ko in the world rankings after the tournament.
Ko won the event last year, becoming the 200th Korean to win a title on the LPGA Tour.
In her first event since the CP Women's Open in August, Ko made multiple mistakes, which was very unlike her. She was tied for 76th among 78 players, but can still play the full four rounds as it is a no-cut event.
"I was excited to be back on the course, but it didn't go well, maybe because I was too excited. I'm very upset, but I don't want to make excuses with my wrist. I did my best, but I played poorly," Ko said. "I will prepare for the remaining rounds to play better."
For Thitikul, who is leading the Rookie of the Year race with two wins this season, winning the tournament would secure the award and the world No. 1 spot, as she currently has 7.24 ranking points, just 0.35 point behind Ko.
- Copyright © Chosunilbo & Chosun.com