Noh raising his sights

Korea’s teen titan Noh Seung-yul, the newly crowned Asian Tour number one, is looking to up his ante in 2011.

Korea’s teen titan Noh Seung-yul, the newly crowned Asian Tour number one, is looking to sharpen all parts of his golf armoury in his bid for more glory in 2011.

The 19-year-old was a big hit in Asia last year, thanks to one victory in Malaysia, four top-10s and commendable performances in the Majors but he will not be resting on his laurels as he seeks to maintain his rise in world golf.

“I want to be more consistent with my game,” he said on Wednesday.

“On some days I’m good but the next day, I’m bad. I need to be consistent for four days regularly. Once I can do that, I can start thinking about winning the big tournaments including the Majors,” said Noh.

“I will keep working on all parts of my game, not just one or two areas. I think I have learned a lot by playing on the Asian Tour these past few years but there is still more to learn.”

One thing that Noh will be able to count upon during his travels across many of the world’s finest fairways this season will be his father-cum-caddie, Gu-hyeon.

Noh paid a glowing tribute to his father.

“My dad keeps me focused on my golf. I’ve got a younger sister who likes to go shopping or visit the city with my mum, but I have dad who keeps my mind on golf. There is more focus in my golf and I can play well,” said Noh.

“When I first joined the Asian Tour (in 2008), I didn’t have many friends. Nobody knew me then and dad was my only friend. It was very important that he travelled and caddied for me and he is good company.”

After becoming the youngest Asian Tour Order of Merit winner at the age of 19 years and 204 days, as well as picking up the Players’ Player of the Year award, Noh’s vision for the future is very clear.

The Korean, who underwent corrective eye surgery last month, has set his sights on winning on European soil this year and intends to break into the world’s top-30.

Noh, presently ranked 64th in the world, is also in no rush to contend in the Majors although impressive showings at the US Open and PGA Championship last year suggest he has every chance of emulating countryman Y.E. Yang, an Asian Tour honorary member, as a Major champion.

“The Majors are different. We play on difficult courses and totally different conditions. Once I get more experience in the Majors, I can maybe become the second Asian player to win a Major,” said Noh, who won the Maybank Malaysian Open last season and the 2008 Midea China Classic in his rookie professional year.

As the Asian Tour number one, Noh will be exempted into this year’s British Open and the WGC-Cadillac Championship.

If he maintains or improves his world ranking in time, he will also qualify for the WGC-Accenture Match Play next month.