Lydia Ko's form slump continued at the Australian Open but the Kiwi star is putting a predictably positive spin on her start to the season.
Ko finished in a tie for 46th at two over par in Adelaide, 12 shots behind the runaway winner Ha Na Jang of Korea.
There must be fears that Ko's career is in a slide after a poor second half to last year's LPGA tour, although she did claim the Olympic silver medal in Rio.
"I hit my driver really well and that was the biggest thing that I was struggling with towards the end of my year last year," Ko told AAP after carding two over in Sunday's final round and failing to record a birdie.
"It was great to be confident and be able to hit those fairways, especially with the wind this week, it wasn't easy to hit them. A lot of positive signs. Hopefully by next week it will be polished.
"It was my first tournament back. I think there are a lot of positive things to look at rather than thinking 'hey, I shot over par'."
Ko's challenger for the world number one ranking, Thailand's Ariya Jutanugarn, snared five birdies in the first 11 holes of the final round before fading to finish third, four strokes behind world number six Jang.
The tour now moves to the Honda LPGA tournament in Thailand this week, where the field will include Ko, Jutanugarn and rising Canadian star Brooke Henderson.
Korea's Olympic champion Inbee Park is set to make her debut for the season, after a long absence in 2016 recovering from a thumb injury. Park has not played on the tour since June although she battled past the injury to win the gold medal in August.
First tournament of the 2017 season Wasn't exactly the result I was hoping for, but there were... https://t.co/E2yyMBkTaF— Lydia Ko (@LydiaKo) February 19, 2017