Nearly two weeks after her first LPGA Tour victory, Gemma Dryburgh is riding a wave of good play into the CME Group Tour Championship. At last week’s Pelican Women’s Championship, Dryburgh said it has been a longtime goal of hers to make it into the season finale Tour Championship. In fact, she travelled to Korea and Japan for the Tour’s Asian Swing to play her way into the event and ended up becoming a Rolex First-Time Winner at the TOTO Japan Classic. Now, she’s reevaluating her goals while focusing on this week’s $2 million winner’s check.
“I guess win again. Then I guess I would try to win a major at some point. That's another goal,” she said. “But, yeah, just concentrating on the next event, and obviously we're far away from the finish this week. So just kind of focusing on each round at the moment.”
During Thursday’s opening round, the 29-year-old shot a 5-under 67 at Tiburon Golf Club to finish T4 heading into the second round. Playing into heavy morning winds, Dryburgh made par on her first four holes, then put together a run of six birdies between Nos. 5-14. The only bogey on her card came late in the round, after a poor drive on the par-5 15th that, funnily enough, happened after the winds started to die down.
“Yeah, it was straight into the teeth of the wind in the first four, five holes I think it was… So just kind of had to get through those and then there were a few birdie chances after that,” said the Scot, who hopes to use the wind to her advantage throughout the week. “I'm not sure what the wind is doing tomorrow, but I guess if it's windy, it kind of suits me, being from Scotland and stuff, being used to playing in the wind.”
Dryburgh, who hit 12 of 14 fairways and 14 of 18 greens with 27 putts, feels her game is in the best place it can be heading into the final event of the season. She credits this to the confidence she gained from her win in Japan, before which she felt her season had been a little better than average with one top-10 and one additional top-20 finish. Straight off her win, Dryburgh added another top-20 result with her T13 finish at Pelican Golf Club and wants to end the season on a high note with another in Naples, FL.
“I've seen it before with other people when they win. They kind of keep going with good results after that. I think that's kind of what I feel as well,” said Dryburgh. “I'm just feeling really confident with my game. Now I know I can do it since I've done it in Japan. Why can't I do it again? There's no reason why not. Just kind of rolling with the confidence at the moment.”