As Minjee Lee hoisted the silver trophy at the 2021 Amundi Evian Championship, she did not know that the victory would open the proverbial floodgates. With a final-round 64 and a two-putt playoff birdie that clinched her first major title, Lee began a streak of what she says is some of the best golf of her illustrious career.
“I feel like I'm in a really good place with my game. Mentally I'm in a good place as well,” said Lee as she prepared to start her title defense on Thursday. “I feel like everything is kind of coming together really well. I really worked hard for all of this, so I'm going to keep working hard and hopefully it keeps paying off.”
Since Lee’s victory in Evian-les-Bains, she has notched 13 top-20 finishes, including a win at the Cognizant Founders Cup and her second major title in June at the U.S. Women's Open presented by ProMedica, and has soared to No. 2 in the Rolex Women's World Golf Rankings. The 26-year-old Australian enters the week with a combined score to par in the 2022 majors of -24, 13 shots better than any other player. And according to the KPMG Performance Insights, she leads the LPGA Tour in Strokes Gained Total (2.610), Strokes Gained Tee to Green (3.44) and Strokes Gained Approach Around the Green (2.680).
“I feel like I've been working on all aspects of my game for my entire life to bring me to that position. I don't think necessarily that moment, but all the hard work that I put into it,” said Lee, who said she focused on her putting and wedge game ahead of traveling to Evian. “I think it really shaped sort of, you know, my attitude and sort of my mindset going into the other events. So, yeah, definitely helped me in that aspect.”
Jin Young Ko is the last player to win multiple majors in one year, taking the Chevron and Amundi Evian titles in 2019. The last Australian to accomplish that feat? That would be the great Karrie Webb, who took the U.S. Women’s and KPMG Women’s PGA titles in 2001. So could Lee add her name to that list? She played it coy on Wednesday, saying, “I feel like I'm in a good place.” But if the big smile on her face had words, it would say look out, Minjee Lee is coming.