So Yeon Ryu aims to complete Open double for Jordan Spieth’s coach

World No 1 So Yeon Ryu speaks to the media on the eve of the Ricoh Women's British Open at Kingsbarns. Picture: Getty Images
World No 1 So Yeon Ryu speaks to the media on the eve of the Ricoh Women's British Open at Kingsbarns. Picture: Getty Images
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So Yeon Ryu, the women’s world No 1, is aiming to complete a British Open double this week for coach Cameron McCormick after his star pupil, Jordan Spieth, won the men’s equivalent less than a fortnight ago.

“That would be nice,” admitted the 27-year-old, smiling, as she talked about her connection with McCormick, Spieth’s long-time coach who has also been working with the Korean since the start of last year.

“When Jordan played at The Open, I was in Scotland, so I watched a lot of it,” added Ryu of the Texan claiming a three-shot victory in the Claret Jug event at Royal Birkdale. “On Sunday, his long game was not really great, but his mentality was so strong he was able to fight back. He’s young, but I’m always amazed by how strong he is.”

Ryu, who has been at the top of the women’s world rankings for the past six weeks, sees McCormick at his base in Dallas, where she has met Spieth now and again.

“We haven’t really talked a lot, but we always congratulate each other. Also, Cameron had a lot of experience through Jordan, so he helped me out a lot to be No 1,” she said.

“I started to work with him since January 2016, and I would say I got used to my swing maybe since last August. Cameron and I had to work really hard for about six months to complete my swing changes.”

That involved getting her ball flight down a bit and Ryu reckons she can get in the mix on the Fife coast this weekend after being happy with her performance in last week’s Scottish Open at Dundonald Links.

“Judging by last week, I think my ball had a nice trajectory for a side wind right now,” she said. “I think before my ball was going quite high but now I think I can trust myself that my ball flight.

“Right now I feel more comfortable hitting a low shot and also hitting different chip shots. It’s going to be more fun to play.”

Ryu has also been working on her putting with Australian Ian Baker-Finch, the 1991 Open champion whose main involvement in golf these days is as commentator.

“Since I started working with Finchy, my mindset has changed, especially when I practice,” she revealed.

“I think he somehow just taught me to enjoy the practice and taught me to be really disciplined. I’d suggest you always make a goal to achieve when you practice.”