Posted by: happyfan08 | January 17, 2011

2010 Awards (5 of 10): Most Fashionable, Best Shot

Most Fashionable

And the Winner Is: Shin Ae Ahn

Is there any Seoulie Award more hotly contested each year than the Most Fashionable award?  The Korean lady golfers definitely love their fashion.  I’m hardly a fashionista, but I know when someone has a unique style that makes them stand out (in a good way, of course!). 

This year, the golfer who turned the most heads with her interesting choice of outfits was Shin Ae Ahn.  Ahn was last year’s KLPGA Rookie of the Year, but she came into her own in 2010 with two wins and a third place finish on the money list. She also had a fashion sponsorship with Le Coq Golf Fashion, appeared in a commercial for them (which you can see on You Tube – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kUA-7mAVclc – Shin Ae is the lady in the black pants), and effectively modeled their outfits all through the season.  Here is a nice selection of some of her greatest hits.  

Shin Ae at the Hidden Valley

Glamor shot

Chilling with So Yeon Ryu at the season ending ADT-CAPS

The year's final Major

Driving at the Nefs Masterpiece

Saluting the crowds

Honorable Mentions:

Hee Kyung Seo

The Fashion Model of the Fairways continued to impress with her style throughout 2010.

Not winning as many tournaments, but still having a ball!

Waiting at the Women's British Open

Another eye catching outfit

Tip of the cap

At the Nefs

Ha Neul Kim

Another sponsoree of Le Coq Sportif (along with our award winner Shin Ae Ahn), Ha Neul has been down in the standings lately, but her fashion sense still stands out in the crowd!

Ha Neul Kim

Ha Neul usually enjoys herself on the course

Ha Neul means 'sky' in Korean; here she models a sky blue top

Hee Young Park

Hee Young certainly wore one of the most controversial styles of the 2010 season, when she rocked some rather short shorts at several events.

Hee Young at the start of the LPGA season

Hee Young in Thailand

Who wears short shorts?

Hee Young in Singapore

Shot of the Year

And the Winner Is : Se Ri’s phenomenal bunker shot on the third playoff hole of the Bell Micro

This award wasn’t even close.  One shot stood head and shoulders above every other shot this year.  It was the most significant shot in that it directly led to a win, and more importantly, it allowed the most important player in Korean Women’s Golf to claim a victory after a three year drought.

The shot came in May at the Bell Micro Classic.  As the event entered its final round, three golfers, all Major winners, were tied for the lead: Se Ri, Suzann Pettersen and Brittany Linicome.  As it turned out, the weather was so bad on Sunday that the final round could not be played.  And so, they had a playoff with those three players to decide the championship.

Se Ri deals with the elements during the Bell Micro playoff

Pak was 5-0 in playoffs since joining the LPGA, but her last playoff win was 4 years previously at the LPGA Championship.  She had not even won at all since 2007.  But one thing you could count on with Se Ri was, she almost always rises to the challenge when she is in the hunt, and this day would be a spectacular reminder of that fact.

After all three made pars on the first playoff hole, they played the hole a second time.  This time, Pettersen blinked first, hitting her approach shot over the green and failing to get up and down.  Pak put her approach into a bunker behind the green, and her sand shot was less than stellar, leaving herself about ten feet for par.  But after Lincicome made her par, Pak effortlessly drained the par save to keep the playoff going.

Next time through, however, Se Ri hit her drive into a fairway bunker, while Lincicome’s drive was perfect.  Pak was in trouble.  From where she was, there was almost no room to hit an approach that would stop anywhere near the hole.  She had maybe an area the size of a small table in which she could hit the ball; too short, and she would wind up in a bunker; too far, and she’d be over the green.  Of course, she could play conservatively and try to land on the green far from the hole.  But Pak did not get into the Hall of Fame by playing it safe in situations like this one.

Great shot, great reaction

Se Ri’s response was to hit a brilliant shot right at the flag; she landed the ball almost precisely to the inch where she needed to hit it.  To hit a shot like that under any condition is amazing enough.  To do it from a bunker with the tournament on the line was jaw dropping.

Lincicome would hit her approach short into the bunker, perhaps trying to duplicate Pak’s amazing shot.  Her sand shot ended up 25 feet from the hole, but she still made the par, putting the pressure on Pak to make the six footer to win.  But Se Ri had already done most of the heavy lifting, and without any difficulty, she made the birdie to claim her 25th career victory.

At long last, win #25!

Honorable Mentions:

Na Yeon Choi hole in one, round 3, Jamie Farr Owens Corning Classic

Choi would go on to win this event in a playoff.

Shin’s approach on 18, round 4, Evian Masters

Jiyai putting at the Evian

Jiyai Shin had been in hunter mode all day during the final round of the Evian Masters, trying to reel Morgan Pressel in.  Pressel had started the day with a two shot lead, but by the time they reached the final hole, they were tied with two other golfers, Na Yeon Choi and teenager Alexis Thompson, at 13 under par.  Both Shin and Pressel were in the fairway after two shots.  Pressel hit her approach first to about eight feet right of the hole.  Shin had to follow that, and delivered.  She hit her wedge over the flag, into the collar around the green, where it still had enough spin despite the higher grass to spin back to within 10 feet.  She buried the birdie moments later and won the event, moving back to #1 in the Rolex rankings in the process.

Jimin Kang’s approach on hole 16, Round 3, Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia

Jimin Kang was in a furious battle with Juli Inkster for the title at this year’s inaugural Sime Darby in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (see ‘Clutch Performance of the Year’ for more details).  But the key shot in her tournament may have come at the par 5 16th.  Kang could have played it safe and gone for the middle of the green, but instead hit an approach left of the hole.  There was little room to hit it there, and had she missed, she would have been either in bad rough or even in the water.  But she hit a perfect shot, made the birdie, and went on to win the tournament by a stroke.

Na Yeon Choi, hole 17, Hana Bank Championship round 3

Na Yeon putting in the final round of the Hana Bank

Choi took over the lead from her good friend Song Hee Kim in round 3, and also had Korean American starlet Vicky Hurst breathing down her neck.  Moments earlier, she had made a bogey on the 16th, and suddenly the leaderboard was getting uncomfortably tight.  Choi hit her tee shot on this hole well past the flag, leaving herself a winding, extremely dicey putt.  A three putt would have been a disaster at that point, especially with Kim sitting close enough for a birdie.  Choi’s putt was the best of the year, winding slowly, perfectly, down the exact right line.  Well, almost: it stopped an inch from the hole, leaving her a tap in par.  She won the event one hole later.

Amy Yang approach on hole 13 bounces, round 4, Tour Championship

As mentioned previously, this was a fantastic approach by Yang as she tried to claw her way back up the leaderboard.  She hit the shot a few feet short of the flag, it bounced a couple of times, lightly tapped the flagstick, and stopped an inch from the cup.  Had that but got in, she might have won.  Still, it was an easy birdie, and got her right back into the fight for the rest of the round, after an early quad bogey had all but ended her chances.

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Responses

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