Saturday at the CME Group Tour Championship was a doubly successful day for Rolex Ranking No. 1 Jin Young Ko. Not only did she keep a spot near the top of the leaderboard at -12, one stroke off the lead held by Sei Young Kim, but she also met one of her icons, 12-time PGA Tour winner Steve Stricker, and even got him to promise a date on the putting green.
“I met him before the tee off today and then I said, ‘Hi. I'm your fan.’ He said, ‘Okay, good luck. And thank you,’” said Ko of her interaction with Stricker, who is moonlighting as a on-course commentator for Golf Channel during the weekend broadcast coverage. “I asked him on the course, maybe hole number 12, I asked to him, ‘How long of a time do you practice putting?’ He said, ‘A lot.’ I said, ‘So how many times?’ ‘A lot,’ [he said.] And then I said, ‘I want to ask you about putting. Teach me.’ And then he said, ‘Any time.’ He was really good. He was nice.”
Only one round left before the 2020 LPGA Tour season wraps up, Ko knows that Sunday is her final opportunity to win her first tournament of the pandemic-stained season. And, of course, capture her first Race to the CME Globe title.
“Win? Well, I never finished top 10 for this course, Tiburon, so if I win it's going to be a big one to me. So I will try for the win, but I don't want to get too greedy,” said Ko.