Of all the impressive numbers, and they are both voluminous and astounding, perhaps the most jarring are the gaps. Jin Young Ko birdied five of her last six holes at Sentosa Golf Club in Singapore to get to 17 under and vault past Minjee Lee and In Gee Chun and win the HSBC Women’s World Championship by two shots.
It is Ko’s sixth victory in 10 starts. And in so doing, she set new all-time LPGA Tour records for consecutive rounds in the 60s (15) and consecutive rounds under par (30). She also now has 13 victories in only 73 career starts.
World No. 1 Ko had another streak going for a while, having hit 66 consecutive greens in regulation until she missed the fourth in her first round in Singapore, a shot that led to a double bogey and put the other records in temporary peril.
To get some perspective on this, you have to look at the gaps in Ko’s schedule. The HSBC was Ko’s first competitive event since the CME Group Tour Championship the week before American Thanksgiving last November. Her consecutive rounds in the 60s streak goes back to October 22, 2021. And her consecutive rounds under par go all the way back to the Sunday of the Amundi Evian Championship, July 22 of last year.
In the last 28 months, Ko has only played 23 LPGA Tour events. She’s won seven of them and finished in the top 10 in 10 others. If she played more, who knows where she might be.
“First of all, I just proud myself to record 15 rounds straight in the 60s,” Ko said in Singapore after the win. “I'm so happy. I feel amazing right now.”
Even so, she has no plans to play again right away. Ko will skip the Honda LPGA Thailand and the JTBC Classic in Carlsbad, California. That will make her next appearance, her second start of the year, the Chevron Championship the first weekend in April – the first major championship of the season.
“It's a great honor to (set a) new record,” she said on Sunday. “My next event will be in (Palm Desert). I need to take time before the next event. A break, so I can practice more in the break time.”