Singapore's rising mercury a challenge for Ko's hot streak

Wed Mar 4, 2015 5:06am EST
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By Patrick Johnston

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Singapore's steamy temperatures will be no less a challenge than the star-studded field at the HSBC Women's Champions for teenaged world number one Lydia Ko's bid for her third successive title.

The 17-year-old New Zealander discovered it was not just sweaty palms that golfers have to cope with in the humid Southeast Asian citystate when she played in the 2012 Queen Sirikit Cup.

"At that time, I had glasses and the moment I opened the door and went out my glasses just fogged up straightaway," Ko told reporters on Wednesday.

"I was like, 'man', obviously this is like going to freeze up the whole time."

The large-framed glasses were ditched at the start of this year in favor of contact lenses and the switch has coincided with her becoming the youngest golfer, across genders, to top the world rankings.

Undeterred by the pressure of the position, Ko has won her last two events in Australia and at her home New Zealand Open, where she threatened golf's magical number, 59, in the second round.

The Seoul-born Ko will look to make it three consecutive wins when she returns to Singapore for the LPGA tournament, which starts on Thursday and boasts a field that includes 19 of the top-20 women's golfers in the world.

"I have had such a great last two weeks, so obviously there's expectation. You're world number one and a lot of people think you should win every week because you are, but that's really not the case," she said.   Continued...

Aug 21, 2014; London, Ontario, CAN; LPGA golfer and two time defending champion Lydia Ko (NZL) tees off on the first tee during the first round of the Canadian Pacific Women's Open golf tournament at London Hunt and Country Club. Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports