SINGAPORE | It is a bit unfair that everyone should ask Lydia Ko for her views on this, that and the next thing when she is still only 21. However, of all the women playing in this week’s HSBC Women’s World Championship, she was the best qualified to comment on the latest arrivals on the world golf scene. Namely, the Saudis, and the steps they have taken thus far to encourage girls in golf.
Those Saudi officials behind this new drive had clearly had Ko in mind when, not so long ago, they called for some words of wisdom from the Korean and New Zealand golfing fraternities. (Ko, of course, is a New Zealand citizen who was born in South Korea.)
Ko listened with interest to the news borne by GGP as to how the Korean representative, when he arrived in Jeddah, had explained that a Korean girls’ squad would be expected to practise for four hours every morning and for another four hours after lunch. And she gave a knowing smile when she learned that the Saudis had taken no time at all to realise that Saudi Arabian girls would not put up with any of that.
Next, the former world No. 1 pricked up her ears at what happened when the Korean’s opposite number turned up from New Zealand. To the coach in question, the only thing that mattered was that the New Zealand kids should have fun. Indeed, far from lining them up on the range, he believed in starting them off with baseball bats and balls and teaching them to play catch.
With that idea striking no more of a chord than the K...
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