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April 27, 2021

Jin Young Ko

Republic of Singapore

Sentosa Golf Club

Press Conference

THE MODERATOR: Welcome to the HSBC Women's World Championship. We are joined by Jin Young Ko. How are you doing today?

JIN YOUNG KO: I am good. Thank you.

THE MODERATOR: What has it been like since you ended the L.A. Open? You were able to finish second behind Brooke. What was that week like for you?

JIN YOUNG KO: Well, I had great week last week with Brooke in the last round. And I really wanted to celebrate with Brooke. When I won CP Women's Open, I played with Brooke and she had a really good celebration for me, and I wanted to do that when she win again. But I was lucky playing with Brooke. I want to say congratulations, Brooke.

THE MODERATOR: I know you two are quite close but you also said that you were -- you went about the week a little differently; that you weren't practicing because you had an injury in your wrist. How have you felt since the end of the L.A. Open in your wrist?

JIN YOUNG KO: I was practice for the L.A. Open on Sunday, I don't know what the name; but I had practice on the mat. So I hit some balls and I felt a little soft injury here. So I didn't practice after on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday until -- on Sunday, even in the morning before the tee off. So I had just a couple puttings and just tee off, and I had great round, and I got nine birdies on third round. So my caddie was surprised, I guess.

But I hope my injury is getting better, and I will do my best on this week.

THE MODERATOR: So after L.A., you hop on a 17-and-a-half-hour flight to Singapore.


THE MODERATOR: What was the plane ride like for you and what has it been like since you touched down in Singapore.

JIN YOUNG KO: Well, I had lots of sleeps on the plane. I slept 12 hours in 17 hours. Yeah, I slept 12 hours and watched some movies and dramas, and I arrived to Singapore.

THE MODERATOR: And then I know we had to stay in our rooms, but how do you prepare for a week when you're not able to get out to the course as much as maybe you would usually get out to the course?

JIN YOUNG KO: Well, it's tough. We have to stay on the hotel and golf course. We can't go to outside to even restaurant, as well. But I have friend in Singapore, so he delivered lots of food yesterday, lunch and dinner. I ate lots of dumplings, and I had chili crabs for dinner, so I'm full still.

THE MODERATOR: I'm actually super jealous of that, especially of the dumplings. I know you told me earlier you have not played the course yet but you've done pretty well the last two times you've been here. What are some of the ream memories that you member most about Sentosa Golf Club?

JIN YOUNG KO: First thing is hot, nothing else, hot, and green speed was fast I think. And course in great shapes and lots of good food, chili crabs or pepper crabs, I love that.

THE MODERATOR: I was told that hopefully I can try some of those crabs this week.

But what are some of the goals and expectations you've set for yourself this week knowing that you've done pretty well here before.

JIN YOUNG PARK: My game is getting better as first tournament in Florida in January, February. So I hope coming soon to winner's circle, and I will focus on my game and I will fight with heart.

Q. Hope the flight was uneventful with that much sleeping. Were you able to go to a doctor and someone take a look at your risk and did you learn what the specific injury was?

JIN YOUNG KO: No, I didn't go to hospital. I had no chance to go.

Q. How did not practicing affect you the most on course last week?

JIN YOUNG KO: Well, I did just like image training for the tee off, and my feeling right now is better. I had spray or something, like cooler play, so I will use that all the time and I hope it's getting better.

Q. What do you mean by "image training?"

JIN YOUNG KO: Like my swing or my putting, everything in my game.

Q. Can you talk about your targets this year? Is it Olympics and trying to get the Gold Medal or do you have different goals in mind and for Singapore?

JIN YOUNG KO: Well, my goal is better play as 2019. And I don't care about, like, future. Like I'm just focused on my, like, driving accuracy and driving, fairway hits, how many hit on green or how many putts average.

Yeah, my focus is nothing else, to the other players, how to play the other players or whatever. So, yeah, nothing, just injury.

Q. And are you happy with the state of your game now compared to the first tournament of the season, and what do you think you need to improve on to win this week?

JIN YOUNG KO: Well, yeah, this tour has lots of great players playing this tour, and this week, as well. Everyone's trying to get to win, the same as me, but we can't control the future. So just like practice before the tournament and just keep the energy before the tournament and lots of drinks, water, with this weather. Nothing else.

THE MODERATOR: We had Inbee who wants to get back to the Olympics, do you want to get to the Olympics?

JIN YOUNG KO: Yeah, I saw that in Rio in 2016 when she got Gold Medal, and I wanted to play four years later in Tokyo. But one year's delayed as last year, so we can't play Tokyo in this year. So I really want to play Tokyo, and if I'm playing really good, I can get the medals or whatever.

So, just trying, and life is fun.

THE MODERATOR: I know you always try to be the happiest golfer on the course. But as you think about getting back into the winner's circle, does that make you an even happier golfer on the course.

JIN YOUNG KO: Not really. I'm playing better as last week or two weeks ago. It makes me happier; happiest golfer on course, because everybody is trying to get better as yesterday, as two days ago, and me, too. So don't think about nothing.

Q. Interesting that you mention that you just want to get better and better. For you to be the world No. 1, it's not an easy feat. Can you tell us specifically what it takes to get better and better? Also, which parts of your game that you're working on right now?

JIN YOUNG KO: Well, everything. I'm trying to get better for my -- everything, which part, like putting, irons, driver, or as personality, out of the golf life, as well.

When I go back to room, I read the Bible and books and I don't want to think about golf in the room. I just try to focus, game is just on the course, not in the room. That makes me better, to get better.

Q. Interesting. But obviously it takes something more to win or to be placed so high in every tournament or in a lot of the tournaments that you play in. Now, what does it take? Is it your faith as a Christian? Is it a mental edge that gives you the edge over the competition?

JIN YOUNG KO: My father was boxer, and when I was younger, I was in competition with my father a lot. So my father wanted to be stronger than me, and me, too. I want to be more stronger than yesterday. So, yeah, it's tough position. I mean, World Ranking No. 1, this position is not easy, but not tough. If I'm playing better and better, I can keep this position one month or two months or even more. That is good motivation for me, and that makes me more sure; I want to be more strong person and happy person.

Q. So I guess being happy is your secret weapon?

JIN YOUNG KO: Yes, I think so.

THE MODERATOR: This week one of the big themes is game-changers. What do you think was a game-changing moment in your career on the LPGA Tour.

JIN YOUNG KO: I think since 2019, ANA. Because that tournament was my first time win major tournament, so that makes me want to be more a better person and strong player. Yeah, I think ANA, it was great moment for me.

THE MODERATOR: How often do you think about that particular moment.

JIN YOUNG KO: I think every day. When I play ANA in this year, I couldn't stop thinking of great memorable in 2019, so it was happy, always.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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