Parents blamed for golfer Ko’s slump
WELLINGTON: Golfer Lydia Ko’s ex-coach blamed her parents for her slide down the rankings Tuesday, accusing them of mishandling the former world number one and “turning her into ordinary”.
“It really is a very sad situation to observe,” US-based coach David Leadbetter told Radio Sport, as he implored the Korean-born New Zealander’s parents to ease up on the one-time prodigy.
“Her team have to be thinking that they have made some huge mistakes taking an unbelievably talented player and turning her into ordinary,” Leadbetter said. “I hope she gets it back but restoring confidence is never the easiest thing to do. Her parents have a lot to answer for — a case of unbelievable ignorance.”
Ko was the youngest ever world number one as a 17-year-old, but now aged 22 she has slumped to number 24 after missing last week’s British Open cut by a whopping 10 shots. Leadbetter said Ko, who has gone through a succession of coaches and caddies since turning pro, needed to be given the freedom to manage her own affairs. “I think her parents need to sort of let her go and do her thing. She’s 21-22 years of age now. She could control her own career. She should know what’s best for her,” he said.