A good year keeps getting better for these guys. Sungjae Im currently with a big early lead on the PGA TOUR, Byeonghun in 2nd place.
Greensboro tends to have a weak field (heck, even MIKE WEIR is in the field - and he made the cut!) as the big stars are already assured of a place in the so-called playoffs which start next week, and those that are there are either trying to improve their positions or are fighting to retain their card as only the top 125 in the points race are assured of playing next season. Those that come up short have to go into a mixer series with the guys from the minor league to get one of the cards available there. Otherwise their immediate future is playing the corn hole tour at events like this week's Ellie Mae Classic (I assume Jed, Jethro and Granny were unavailable as they're still in a meeting with Mr. Drysdale).
Both Koreans on the first page of the leaderboard are the current men's Olympic team as things stand now, but Siwoo Kim is lurking 4 shots behind An and 2 behind Im.
An interesting event was on GC last night, the first round of the Shinhan Donghae Open, the first tournament ever tri-sponsored by the Japan, Korea and Asian tours. They're playing at Bear's Best in Incheon, a frequent venue for the Korean Women's Open. It has the usual view for golf courses in this area...artificial, sparsely lined with young trees...and a forest of concrete as a backdrop (and they are not done, I saw cranes in the distance).
The real Dr. Noh made his return to competitive golf following six weeks of hard training immediately after his 2-year military hitch ended. He shot 75 (+4), but managed to hit the green at the par-4 11th and two-putted for a birdie. The hole is listed at 390 yards, but I assume it was moved up for Round One...the broadcasters thought he carried his drive 330.
Nice playoff win today by Kevin Na who is getting it done on and off the golf course. Also, kudos to him for sticking up for Bio Kim ... the PGA Tour should give that guy a second chance somewhere ... he's not worse than that worm Pat Perez who unloaded a torrent of profanities at the 2017 CJ Cup (on Jeju Island of all places).
Post by legitimategolf on Mar 1, 2020 23:09:49 GMT
Wow, he did it. Showed some newbie nerves but also showed some tremendous hwait! His caddie also turned in a Sharon Choi-worthy performance for the winner's TV interview.
Here's a couple good profiles on Sungjae. Not much of a story here though. Still just a kid, travels full-time with parents. Touring the US looking for Korean food. Lonely nights in the hotel room etc.
Post by legitimategolf on Mar 3, 2020 18:44:11 GMT
Don't worry Don there will be no stampede, messageboard posters are an endangered species. And nobody's looking for Korean male golf not even during an LPGA quarantine. I even made a Bong Joon Ho reference and Happyfan still couldn't be bothered.
Turns out Sungjae's caddie for the week was Canadian Albin Choi, a golfer on the Korn Ferry tour.
Now they're working together full-time. Heartwarming story of how these two came together. Albin Choi is a pro-caliber golfer, a native speaker of both English and Korean, and a few years older than Sungjae--he could not have found a better caddie in the whole world, seems like. I was bullish on Sungjae Im before; I'm really expecting huge things now with this guy at his side.
Sorry to keep beating a dead horse but Sungjae Im is currently contending at the Masters, a prestigious men's golf tournament.
Sungjae is in the final group and has his goal playing right alongside him, but is a 4 shot deficit to world #1 Dustin Johnson too much to overcome, or can he emulate Y.E. Yang's final round from the '09 PGA Championship? Yang overtook Tiger Woods 11 years ago; Im's reward would be to have Woods slip a fresh green jacket onto his shoulders.