clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Lydia Ko misses cut at Ladies Scottish Open after shooting 79

Ko exited early after carding the second-highest single-round score in her professional career

Aberdeen Asset Management Ladies Scottish Open - Day One Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

Lydia Ko may claim that all is well after she made wholesale changes to what got her to world No. 1. But with a swift exit from the Ladies Scottish Open after carding her second-worst score as a professional on Friday, it is becoming more difficult to believe that changing coach, caddies, and clubs may have been the best idea.

Ko, who seemed unbeatable during a fairytale run of 13 victories since the 2013 Canadian Open, added a second-round 7-over 79 to her opening-round 74 and missed her second cut of the season in spectacular fashion at 9-over. Friday’s effort was a day to forget, what with just one birdie among six bogies and a double-6 in her final competitive round before next week’s Women’s British Open, where she posted a career-worst 80 in the final round of the 2014 tournament.

Ko’s day also involved a bit of on-course drama after the currently fourth-ranked women’s golfer questioned whether her ball moved on the 17th fairway and called in an official for a ruling.

No harm, no foul on that potential miscue, as Ko went on to make a par-4 on the hole after starting out with five bogeys in her first seven holes. Things did not get much better for the 20-year-old, whose teen phenom days seem so long ago.

She began her incoming nine with a double and a bogey, and made her sole birdie on the par-4 eighth (her 17th hole of the day), and while she said later she gained valuable experience for next week’s event, Ko noted she has rarely had a harder time inside the ropes.

“I missed like three one-yard putts in a row. I just couldn't stroke the putt. It was all over the show,” Ko told reporters after finishing her tournament 13 shots behind clubhouse leader Karrie Webb. “I think this is one of the windiest conditions I’ve played in … Today was probably one of the most difficult rounds I've played in my career, and I think just physically, mentally.”

It will be interesting to see if Ko makes any more modifications to her team or game before next week. If she does, the most likely switch would be to hire another caddie since Pete Godfrey is the 10th bagman of Ko’s four-year professional career.

Ko, in a swap reminiscent of Rory McIlroy’s shift from Titleist to Nike clubs that resulted in a terrible 2013 season, switched from Callaway to PXG clubs to start her year. Prior to that, she split with swing coach David Leadbetter in favor of Gary Gilchrist.

At the time of all the comings and goings, Ko was in the midst of an 85-week stranglehold on the top ranking.

“They say if it’s not broken, why change it?” Ko rhetorically asked bunkered.co.uk recently. “I’m sure there was negativity about it but with my team and family, I felt they were the right decisions. With all the decisions I’ve made, I feel like we’ve seen progress so it’s about being confident and trusting what’s going on.”

If progress is six top-10 finishes in 15 events in 2017, compared with four wins, including her second major victory, last year, then Ko is moving in the right direction.