As she walked past the scoreboard on 13, Lydia Ko had a brief thought she could shoot 59. At that stage she was 10 under after a bogey, eagle and nine birdies during the second round of the ISPS Handa New Zealand Open at Clearwater today.
In the end she signed for a 61, a new course record and her best ever round. Ironically the course record was set last year by Korean Mi Hyang Lee, whose last round 63 was enough to defeat Ko by one stroke.
“I didn’t know what I was shooting but when I went past the scoreboard on 13, I thought, oh, 59, that is the magical number but I’m pretty happy with 61,” she said.
Ko didn’t start well with a bogey on the first, but an eagle three on the second was the catalyst.
“After the first I was pretty angry. I got into the rough and it was pretty tough for the pin location. I left it short and that really made me angry as I did that yesterday and was not going to do it again today."
“The greens were much better today and rolling better and after that eagle I just got myself into the right position."
“I hit is much closer today so I had more opportunities for birdies. I had the speed much better and when you take that off I really only had to concentrate on my line.”
Ko’s round probably surprised herself, “ I wasn’t hitting it very well out there on the range so I thought, just forget about, let’s just relax. I didn’t have a very good night’s sleep either and I really love my sleep."