Has Lydia Ko become one of us?

Ko, the former world number one, is going through coaches and caddies the way the pack goes through golf instruction videos and advice on the internet.

Getting better at golf has got a lot easier thanks to the internet, or so you might think. Finding new techniques took more effort when it involved trundling down to the library or local book shop.

Now help is at hand 24 hours a day. It might even come with a free set of steak knives to use in the clubhouse afterwards.


But I'm guessing that if you could somehow aggregate this, scores in the world of duffer golf might actually have worsened since the internet came along, because changing things all the time rarely works in the long run.

Golf is funny like that, but not in a humorous way, at all levels.

The 20-year-old Ko is now on track to become a former world number one, permanently.

To drop from the undisputed champ to number 10 so quickly means many other LPGA golfers are playing better than she is. Hiring her third overseas coach since turning professional, and moving on to her 11th caddie, hardly inspires confidence in her strategy especially when she booted David Leadbetter in 2016 after they enjoyed incredible success.

It was Leadbetter who claimed Ko's parents played too big a part in her career. Parent-child relationships can be complicated at the best of times, which is why Ko may be sacking the wrong people.

Unfortunately, Ko has become the smiling assassin of world golf, the nicest person to boot a coach every year while also going through bag carriers like a mafia don.

Ko has a great rapport with the public, but people who work for Ko apparently need to keep an eye on golf magazines to see if they've still got a job, which could make any new employee a little nervous.

Ko is studying psychology yet is shunning basic principles around trust with her own team, instead ploughing on with a surreptitious blame game.

Her remarkable achievements will always be celebrated. But we may have to start accepting her as a shooting star who crashed via the quick-fix method in search of something mysterious beyond what Leadbetter — and before him Guy Wilson — was already providing.

Jack Nicklaus, the best golfer ever by some stretch, relied on one coach for most of his career. Jack Grout believed, devoutly, that golfers must understand their own game, that success came from within. When Grout passed away, he was replaced after a while by Jim Flick, who had often been present when Nicklaus and Grout worked together.

"I don't see Jack Nicklaus," Flick told Nicklaus, before pointing him back to some of the basics which had always worked through his extraordinary career.

The relationship between Nicklaus and his two main coaches was paramount, even if they also provided a sounding board for technical issues. Trust. Patience. Belief.

A year ago, Aussie swing-maestro Adam Scott told golfworld.com he did not have a swing coach anymore

"I only argue with myself about it. … I use my phone a lot more for videoing these days. I try not to ask too many people little things because I think that can lead to problems. So until I have some real issues, I'm just going to leave it that way," he said.

World top 10 golfers Rory McIlroy, Jason Day and Jordan Spieth are among those still relying on the coaches they first worked with as kids. On the subject of caddies, we all know that Tiger Woods' remarkable dominance was in association with one bag carrier, larger-than-life Kiwi Steve Williams.

North Harbour's Ko initially built her career around exceptionally hard work under local coach Wilson, with her father in attendance at all times, before they split in late 2013 as she turned professional.

Ko has had extraordinary success since then, to be fair. And many golfers change coaches and caddies.

But so many changes by the age of 20? It just doesn't feel right.

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