Paju, South Korea — After a significant lead in the points race for the LPGA Rookie of the Year award, South Korean golfer Ryu Hae-ran is now concentrating on preparing her acceptance speech in English.
According to Yonhap News Agency, Ryu leads her closest competitor, Grace Kim of Australia, by 244 points—804 to 560—with only four tournaments remaining after the BMW Ladies Championship in Paju. Ryu said that her focus is now primarily on delivering her acceptance speech in English.
First-year players earn points based on their tournament finishes, with a victory worth 150 points. Although a win by Grace Kim could make the race more interesting, Kim's recent record shows only one top-10 finish after 15 tournaments and five missed cuts since her breakthrough win in April.
In a statement, Ryu acknowledged her sizable lead and expressed relief that she could now focus on other areas. She earned her LPGA membership after winning a qualifying tournament last year and has recorded six top-10 finishes, including her first LPGA win at the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship on October 1.
Ryu also revealed that despite her successful season, there were moments of self-doubt and difficulties in adapting to travel and play in the LPGA tour. However, securing her first victory has notably changed her mindset, making her feel more at ease on the golf course. She plans to participate in four more tournaments this year, aiming for another win or as many top-10 finishes as possible.