SEOUL, Dec. 12 (Yonhap) — On the finish of October, South Korean golfer Ryu Hae-ran declared that she would attempt to take her expertise to the LPGA Tour, assured she may hold with one of the best that ladies’s golf has to supply.
Deep inside, although, the 21-year-old star on the Korea LPGA (KLPGA) Tour nonetheless had doubts she may qualify for the highest girls’s tour so rapidly.
On Sunday in Alabama, Ryu did not simply play her means onto the LPGA Tour: she gained the tour’s qualifying match, formally referred to as the Q-Collection, by two strokes over Bailey Tardy of the USA at 29-under 545 over eight rounds.
“I did not assume that I may earn the LPGA Tour card so quickly,” Ryu mentioned by an interpreter at Highland Oaks Golf Membership in Dothan, Alabama. “It is nonetheless unreal to me that I may play on the LPGA Tour. I feel with extra time, it might really feel extra actual, and I look ahead to enjoying with a few of the greatest gamers on the earth.”
Ryu has been among the many greatest gamers in KLPGA lately. She gained her first title as a nonmember in 2019 after which earned the Korean tour’s prime rookie prize in 2020. In 2022, Ryu completed second within the Participant of the 12 months factors standings and scoring common, and fourth on the cash record.
Throughout her junior days, Ryu had competed towards the likes of Atthaya Thitikul of Thailand, the 2022 LPGA Rookie of the 12 months and world No. 3, and Yuka Saso of Japan, the 2021 U.S. Ladies’s Open champion.
Ryu will now get to play towards them as an LPGA rookie.
“It hasn’t been that way back since I used to be a rookie on the KLPGA, so to be a rookie as soon as once more feels new,” Ryu mentioned. “Incomes this tour card means loads, particularly on the No. 1 tour on the earth. To be the primary to complete makes me even prouder.”
Ryu started the Q-Collection with a 73, a spherical that included 5 bogeys. However over her subsequent seven rounds, Ryu made simply six extra bogeys and a double bogey. She loved three bogey-free rounds alongside the way in which, together with a 66 on Saturday that catapulted her into the lead.
“I feel I performed a significantly better spherical yesterday,” Ryu mentioned. “Begin as we speak was slightly shaky. I missed some putts, however I used to be capable of make some birdies in a row. Going into subsequent yr, I feel I positively have to observe on my putts.”
Ryu mentioned enjoying on slim programs in KLPGA helped her on the Q-Collection as a result of the expertise helped her develop strong ball placing.
“There wasn’t a variety of stroke distinction once I first began this morning so I felt slightly nervous,” she mentioned. “However general, I really feel like I’ve grown as soon as once more by enjoying the Q-Collection.”