Ready steady Ko
Last updated: 6th February 2013
Top amateur Lydia Ko said she was adequately prepared to make an impression at this week's ISPS Handa New Zealand Women's Open.
The 15-year-old Ko started training in earnest for the women's event, which takes place at Clearwater - she arrived at the venue one week early.
Not only has she acquainted herself with the course at Clearwater, but she has also played in varying conditions throughout the past week. She believes that will hold her in good stead this week.
"I am feeling pretty good," said Ko.
"I came here earlier than usual to prepare because I have only played here once and I have never played a tournament here. They asked me to play the Volvik Masters but I decided to have a break and come here early," said Ko.
Ko skipped the Ladies Masters, on the Gold Coast, last week because she was desperate to produce a quality results in a home tournament.
"It is our country's open. I have played well in other country's opens but I have never played as well I wanted to here. I think I have played the best when I was like 12 or something," added the New Zealand teenager.
"It is a pretty important tournament for me because I am a New Zealander and this is the national open. It is not the most important tournament of the year but it is one of the tournaments that I really want to play good at," she added.
Ko has a remarkable record in professional events. She has played 11 professional tournaments, won two titles and never missed the cut.
It is a record that has seen her rocket up the world rankings to number 38.
"Yeah I did not know that [that she is ranked 38 in the world]. It is pretty cool and a surprise for me. I was top 50 last year and I have gone up even more this year and this is pretty cool. I am still an amateur so it is even better."
The biggest challenge for Ko this week is dealing with the high expectations from the local golfing fraternity. Everywhere she has gone in Christchurch she has seen her image promoting the event.
"I saw the posters in public, Ready Set Ko, it is pretty cool but also sometimes a little embarrassing."
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