Amy Yang looks for number four at the Honda LPGA
The LPGA will continue its Asia swing with the Honda LPGA Thailand at Siam Country Club Pattaya in Chonburi, Thailand on Thursday, where Amy Yang will look to win the tournament for a fourth time.
Yang enters the Honda LPGA Thailand as not only the winningest golfer in the tournament's history, with three wins, but also the reigning champion. Yang won the tournament in 2019 at 22 under par, tying her personal best. She previously won in 2017, also at 22 under par, and 2015, at 15 under par.
"I love to come to Thailand and play this event," Yang said in a pre-tournament interview on Wednesday. "This is one of my favorites. I like the golf course, the area, love the fans here. There's no fans this year, but it's great to be back."
Yang joined the LPGA Tour in 2008 and has won four times — the LPGA KEB-HanaBank Championship in 2013 and the Honda LPGA Thailand in 2015, 2017 and 2019. Considering that year-on-year-off consistency, 2021 could once again be Yang's year, although the cancellation of the 2020 tournament due to the Covid-19 pandemic may have interrupted her rhythm.
Still, Yang remained confident in the pre-tournament interview.
"You know, this is my fourth week on the road and I was a little worried about ... my energy level because this is my fourth week," Yang said, "but my game has been improving each week and I am still feeling [good] about my game, so I'm excited to play.
"I have been very fortunate to win three times here. I would love to win another one, but I'll just focus on right now. I'm just going to focus [on] what I need to do [for the] next four days."
As well as Yang, Kim Hyo-joo will be entering the tournament fresh off her win at the HSBC Women's World Championship in Singapore last week.
Kim picked up her fourth LPGA win with a come-from-behind victory at Sentosa Golf Club in Singapore on Sunday, beating out Hannah Green of Australia by one stroke.
The three top-ranking Koreans — world No. 1 Ko Jin-young, No. 2 Park In-bee and No. 3 Kim Sei-young — are not competing in Thailand.
Kim will tee off on the first hole at 9:48 a.m. on Thursday with Patty Tavatanakit of Thailand and Danielle Kang of the United States. Yang will tee off on the first hole at 10 a.m. with Ariya Jutanugarn of Thailand and Lydia Ko of New Zealand.
BY JIM BULLEY [email@example.com]