Golf: Singapore's Koh Sock Hwee stays positive despite not making cut

Singapore's Koh Sock Hwee during the second round of The Dalat at 1200 Ladies Championship yesterday. She is the first Singaporean to play on the Korean LPGA Tour.
Singapore's Koh Sock Hwee during the second round of The Dalat at 1200 Ladies Championship yesterday. She is the first Singaporean to play on the Korean LPGA Tour.PHOTO: THE DALAT AT 1200

Singapore's Koh Sock Hwee failed to make the cut at The Dalat at 1200 Ladies Championship in Vietnam yesterday.

She carded an eight-over 80 in the second round to total 14-over 158 and tie for 68th.

Nonetheless, the 27-year-old, the first Singaporean golfer to play on the Korean LPGA Tour, treasured the experience.

Said Koh, who turned professional a month ago: "Conditions were tough this week and it was a good experience grinding it out.

"I knew competition was tough playing in a KLPGA event but I was in a good position after yesterday and that's a positive."

She said of her first tournament outside Singapore since turning pro: "It's a good learning experience and I'll definitely come back stronger."

Koh admitted that while she was striking the ball well, she had less fun with the short stick and struggled with long putts.

She said: "In Singapore, we're so used to soft, slow greens. Here, it's almost the opposite - firm and fast - so it takes a bit of getting used to."

She revealed that one of the main challenges was playing at altitude as the course is 1,200 metres above sea level in the city of Da Lat.

The windy conditions, "which make it very difficult to predict where your ball will go" did not help either.

Said Koh: "We're high up on altitude, hitting the ball slightly longer than back home in Singapore and the wind makes it very difficult to gauge the distance.

"The course was definitely playing tough."

But she insisted that she would return next year, saying: "The golf course is very beautifully designed; I enjoy playing here, it's tough and it makes me stronger."

The lead was held by Oh Ji Hyun, who carded a 69 to lie on seven-under 137. That gave her a three-stroke cushion over fellow South Korean Ji Han Sol (70).

A further two strokes adrift were Jang Soo Hwa (74) and Cho Jeong Min (72). Fifth-placed Kim Ji Hyun (71) is the only other golfer under par on 143.

THE DALAT AT 1200 LADIES C'SHIP
Day 3: StarHub Ch204, 4pm

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on March 27, 2016, with the headline 'Koh stays positive despite not making cut'. Print Edition | Subscribe