Golf: No pressure to repeat win, says Singapore Open defending champion Song Young Han

South Korean golfer Song Young Han with the champion trophy of the 2016 SMBC Singapore Open on Feb 1, 2016.
South Korean golfer Song Young Han with the champion trophy of the 2016 SMBC Singapore Open on Feb 1, 2016. PHOTO: THE NEW PAPER

SINGAPORE - Defending champion Song Young Han enters this week's SMBC Singapore Open without feeling any pressure of retaining his crown at the Jan 19-22 US$1 million (S$1.42 million) tournament at Sentosa Golf Club's Serapong Course.

The 25-year-old South Korean can become the event's first back-to-back winner since Australian star Adam Scott accomplished that feat in 2006.

However, speaking at a press conference on Tuesday, he said: "There's no pressure in retaining my title. Just like last year, I hope to make the cut. The Serapong Course is a difficult course with a lot of wind. So I believe the most important part is focusing on my short game and putting.

"After winning the Singapore Open, a lot of good opportunities came and I was able to experience many different Tours including the PGA Championship. It gave me inspiration to experience even more and take myself to the next level."

Last year, Song, who was then-ranked 204th in the world, beat then-world No. 1 American Jordan Spieth by one stroke to claim his first professional career title.

That victory was his only win of 2016. He recorded two runners-up finishes in the Japan Golf Tour Organisation's Honma Tour World Cup held last October and last November's Mitsui Sumitomo Taiheiyo Masters.

He also finished third at last July's Japan PGA Championship Nissin Cupnoodle Cup, and is now ranked world No.80.