LPGA rookie working on driving, short game ahead of debut

Looking ahead to a much-anticipated LPGA debut this year, Korean golfer Ryu Hae-ran said Wednesday she will look to increase her distance off the tee and polish up her short game.

Ryu earned her LPGA Tour card by winning the grueling, eight-round qualifying tournament, called the Q-Series, in December. Ryu, 21, won the Rookie of the Year award on the Korea LPGA Tour in 2020 and has five career titles on her home circuit. As she is set to take her talent to the top women’s tour in the world, Ryu said she will begin her offseason training in earnest next week in Thailand. 스포츠토토

“I’ve been trying to improve my conditioning, since I’ll be playing in a lot of tournaments and traveling all across the United States,” Ryu said at a press conference following a corporate appearance in Seoul. “I think it’ll be a perfect season if I can pick up a victory, but I don’t think I’ve ever publicly said my goal is to win a tournament. I think making adjustments to new surroundings will be the most important thing for me.

“I am worried about going to unfamiliar places, but I am going to have a lot of help,” Ryu continued. “I will spend my rookie season with my parents, so I should be fine.”

Ryu has a well-rounded game. She ranked second in the Player of the Year points standings last year and also finished second in scoring average.

Ryu ranked 19th on the Korean tour in driving distance by averaging 244.6 yards off the tee, which would have placed her 145th in the LPGA last year. Ryu said it dawned on her during the Q-Series that she would have to start hitting longer.

“I never thought I was a short hitter in Korea and so I tended to focus on accuracy off the tee,” Ryu said. “In the KLPGA, I often played it safe. But I saw a lot of players going for the green aggressively during the Q-Series. I am going to try to add distance during the winter. I am satisfied with my new club, and I think I will benefit from training in a warmer country.”

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