Ha Na Jang relies on consistency to finish runner up
Although there wasn’t a victory dance for Ha Na Jang this week – which would have been her fourth on the season – she can take some solace in knowing her objective for the week was achieved.
“My goal was 12-under-par going into the week and that’s what I got,” she said. “It’s a really tough golf course so going 4-under-par, 4-under-par, 4-under-par was really good. I just tried to be patient every hole. They were really great rounds.”
Jang’s three-day total of -12 – with matching 68’s each day – left her alone in second place, and moved her to 8th place on the LPGA Tour’s money list.
She said each day she enjoyed a strong front nine, but got to be a little tired – due to the weather – by the time the back nine rolled around. However, she stayed patient and enjoyed a strong result, her best finish since exactly one month ago at the Fubon LPGA Taiwan Championship.
She also enjoyed the fan support, which was incredible each day.
“The fans here are awesome,” Jang said. “One guy after the round today, (who) was following me each day, gave me a club cover. Another gave me candy and chocolates. And another gave me hand cream. It was great.”
Lydia Ko has her best round of the week
Lydia Ko will go into her final tournament of the year in two weeks at the CME Group Tour Championship and she’ll have some ground to make up on Ariya Jutanugarn for the Race to CME Globe and the money list title for this year.
Ko finished tied for 43rd this week at the TOTO JAPAN CLASSIC, but fired her best round of the week, a 2-under-par 69, on Sunday.
“I played pretty consistent,” said Ko. “It was a consistent day, but it was too bad I made bogey on the last hole, which was the only downside of the day. I really enjoyed going back to Japan and hearing all of the fans cheering for me.”
Ko explained she really enjoyed her week in Japan – so much so that she will likely be coming back to Japan for a holiday during the off-season, and said she couldn’t believe she had waited three years to return – but she wished that she had played better.
“I had some great signs though this week, finishing with a 2-under-par today and I progressively got better day-by-day. That’s always good news,” she stated. “I’ve got a week before the (CME Group Tour Championship) so hopefully I’ll be able to finish strong there.”
Despite fine effort Sunday, So Yeon Ryu falls just short
So Yeon Ryu hasn’t won on the LPGA Tour since 2014, but the 2011 U.S. Women’s Open champion continues to fight week-after-week to notch that next title.
And Ryu has been a model of consistency this year. Her tie for third this week – after a tie for fifth last week in Malaysia – was her 10th top-10 finish of the season. With back-to-back top-5 finishes going into the last couple events of the season, it would be no surprise to see Ryu contending for a title again.
Even though she admitted Sunday she had been struggling with her putting for a long time, Ryu stated she had found ‘something’ last week and really stuck to it.
“My shots weren’t that great today, I only hit 10 greens, but I tried to keep it positive and trust myself. I kept having a pep talk with myself,” she said. “I think I just tried to keep a positive mind and that was really helpful.”
With Japan being so close to South Korea in terms of proximity, Ryu said she had been to Japan a lot when she was younger, and felt very comfortable this week.
“A lot of the golf courses are very similar to Korean golf courses,” she explained. “The food is amazing, and the spectators are amazing as well, cheering for all the golfers. I think I had a really great week this week.”