Grace Kim began the week with an “embarrasing” 80, but ended it with the Victoria Women’s Amateur title to her name after cruising to a 7 and 6 win over her Avondale club mate June Song at Kingston Heath Golf Club.
Kim jumped out to the lead early, was five-up at the turn and ended it when they both took par at the 30th hole, ending up five-under par overall.
The victory came at the end of a week when Kim started the strokeplay section with a poorly 80 at Commonwealth. Fortunately, she was able to turn it around.
“I played solid today, actually all throughout this week except the first day of strokeplay where I struggled,” she said.
“That (the 80) was like ‘that’s pretty embarrassing’. I’m happy I was able to come back.”
Kim admitted she was “outside the comfort zone” on a bouncy Kingston Heath, but she liked the experience.
“Now that I’ve won!” she said. “It’s tricky, not like home at all. But I like how it’s different. You don’t get spin out here at all. It just keeps running.”
Kim is heading overseas to play big amateur events in America in 2020 before trying her luck at the LPGA Tour school in August, when she will likely turn professional. She has emerged inspired from her trip to the LPGA Championship as part of the Karrie Webb Scholarship this year, where she stayed in the same house as the winner, Australia’s Hannah Green.
“I loved every bit of it,” she said. “I was so happy to be there and being proud, wearing the green and gold with Becky (Kay, another scholarship holder). And for Hannah to win that week, I was in the house, I reckon that was my best week ever as a golfing experience.”
The women’s final was a learning experience for teenager Song, who got to play her biggest final yet but was schooled by the more experienced Grace Kim, winner of the Youth Olympics gold medal last year and a previous Australian junior champion.
In a small consolation, making the final means Song has earned a start alongside Kim in the ISPS Handa Vic Open at 13th Beach this February.