Daniel Richardson is a Wellington-based sports journalist for NZME. News Service.

Golf: Ko attracts global recognition as she chases leaders

Lydia Ko has also been struggling with a wrist injury. Photo / Natalie Slade
Lydia Ko has also been struggling with a wrist injury. Photo / Natalie Slade

Lydia Ko is still getting used to being a recognisable figure on the LPGA Tour.

The world No 2, who has enjoyed a stellar rookie season on the world's top female golf circuit, is a household name in New Zealand and is now becoming a familiar face across the globe.

Ko was in a share of fifth place at six-under heading into the final round of the LPGA Championship in New York this morning after she shot a one-under 71 yesterday.

"You know, some people out there today, one of the guys was wearing a 'go Lydia' shirt, and I would have never expected that, so I'm so thankful for all the people that have come out here," Ko told reporters after her round. "This is really cool that a lot of people recognise me and clap for me. I think getting the support has been tremendous."

Ko was four shots back from leader Brittany Lincicome (-10), while there were some quality players near the top of the field, including former major winners Inbee Park and Suzann Pettersen who were in a share of second at nine-under.

It wasn't inconceivable that Ko could make a charge during the final round today but she knew she would need to go under the card.

"It's definitely going to [have to] be a low one. I'm already four or five shots behind right now. I just need to play my own game. If I play well and somebody plays better, I can't do much about it."

If Ko was to produce a stirring surge to victory, it would mark her first major crown, while the 17-year-old would also climb to the top of the world rankings.

Ko has also been struggling with a wrist injury during the tournament but she said it was manageable.


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