TSN3 and CTV2
TSN4 and CTV2
From Bob Weeks
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Brooke Henderson has already rewritten the record book pretty well. This week she has the opportunity to send it back to the printer one more time.
Henderson is aiming for a third win in a row at the Lotte Championship, which she won in 2018 and 2019. The event was canceled last year due to the pandemic. If successful, she’ll be the first female golfer to score three goals on the LPGA tour since Inbee Park won the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship from 2013-2015.
« It’s definitely a rare opportunity , so it would be nice to make the most of it, « Henderson said at a news conference in Kapolei, Hawaii this week. « I’m just really excited about the chance. Being in this position is really cool. »
Henderson has to overcome a few obstacles to get this third win. First is the location. The tournament will be played at Kapolei Golf Club , while their two victories, along with 10th and 11th places, were held at Ko Olina Golf Club.
The two courses were designed by architect Ted Robinson (who also designed Sahalee GC in Sammamish, Washington, where Henderson won the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship) and have some similarities, but are so different that they need a revised schedule.
« This golf course looks very similar to Ko Olina at first glance, and then you go up there and there are still some slopes and lots of raised greens that you don’t see that often on Ko Olina, « noted Henderson. » Like every time you play in Hawaii, it’s very windy and all you need to do is play smart and quality golf Make shots to get the ball where you want it. «
Together with sister and caddy Brittany, she will develop a game plan that takes into account the wind, greens and meandering in the layout with as few strokes as possible. Patience, Henderson said, will also be a key to playing well.
So far, the stutter-step schedule offered by the LPGA Tour this season has not been to Henderson’s taste. Although she has two top 10 finishes in five starts, she prefers a more fluid itinerary. Instead of playing a week a month as before, she would rather play week after week. It made the off weeks difficult to handle, which she had to learn a year ago when the pandemic resulted in a lot of canceled tournaments.
« I wasn’t used to many off weeks before 2020, » said Henderson which has an average of 30 starts per year. “So it was a big learning curve. We did a good job learning how to exercise in these weeks off. When I got back from these, I was still in competitive mode, which varies a lot.
« You can practice every day, but if you’re not in competitive mode, you don’t play that well. »
Henderson did Much of their practice time was spent propping up their short game. She wants to try to balance the hot and cold spells she’s going through, especially with her putter.
« Short play is always something I’ve been working on since I was young, » she admitted. “My strength has always been the long game. If I can adjust the short game to match the long game, I think really good things could happen in the future, so I’m just trying to make small adjustments and tweaks to get better. «
At the last tournament, the ANA Inspiration, she experimented with changing putts within 10 feet and changing the position of her hands. While it felt good in practice, she gave up in the middle of the tournament and expected not that it comes back this week.
It’s been two years since Henderson last won a tournament, failing to win a trophy in the shortened season last year after winning twice in the past four years But she knows that she has to avoid trying too hard.
« I’m definitely looking forward to being one of the winners again, » said the 23-year-old. « It’s not really something that can be pushed too hard. You have to take the breaks and play really well and be smart. But you need the breaks too, so I’m just waiting for that to happen and hopefully in the near future. «
This week would be a special time for her to take her 10th career win and set records in the process.
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