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Nelly Korda AIG Women's Open tee times

‘I feel very close’: Nelly Korda eyes another Aramco Team Series crown

 

The World No. 2 has yet to find her form since returning from a back injury. But there’s something about the Aramco Team Series format that gets the American going

Watch out Centurion. Nelly Korda has been fixing her game “one round at a time” but feels the good times may soon be back. And just in time for Aramco Team Series London.

The World No. 2 has been the queen of the unique format – winning in Sotogrande and finishing second and fourth in New York.

Korda missed the cut in the US Women’s Open at Pebble Beach last week as she continues her return from a back injury which kept her out for more than a month.

But about to tee it up at the Hemel Hempstead venue for the first time, the 24-year-old feels she might soon be back to her best.

“Playing Baltusrol [Women’s PGA Championship] and Pebble were definitely a big test after coming back from an injury. Obviously, I feel very close with my game. The scores may not seem it right now.

“At the start of the year, I had a really strong start, I was barely finishing outside the top ten and then had two missed cuts.

“Last week at Pebble wasn’t the greatest of showings, but I think that’s golf and you’ve just got to take it how it is, and you have to grow from it.

“That’s when you appreciate the highs when you go through the lows. I have a great team around me. I’m still working with Jamie Mulligan and David Whelan.

“David Whelan has been my coach since I was 14, so we work on a lot of short game together.”

Asked whether she got more satisfaction from winning as an individual, or as part of a team, Korda said: “Winning is winning.”

While she has thrived in the Aramco format, which sees pros and an amateur team up – alongside a three-day individual event – for a $1 million prize fund, Korda couldn’t be drawn on speculation surrounding team formats in the men’s game and whether she’d be in favour of that on the women’s side.

Nelly Korda

“I don’t really know,” she added. “I feel like that’s all kind of like speculation right now. Until something is set in stone, I don’t really think about it. Right now, I’m focusing on this week as a team event and then the rest of the LPGA season.”

But on the Aramco Team Series, she said: “It’s a super fun event, especially the team aspect of it. I think it brings a different kind of energy. It’s fun, light, and makes golf more fun having teammates out there with you.

“Whenever I get the opportunity I’ve played in them. I think this is my third or fourth. They’re really fun, unique, events but I love the individual aspect of golf as well. It’s fun to mix it up here and there.

“I’ve gotten to play on a team this year as well for International Crown, representing USA, and there’s the Solheim Cup. I think the team aspect of golf is fun, but I also really enjoy the individual part of it.”

Having played the back-9 on Wednesday at Centurion, Korda was also intrigued by the layout’s unusual routing – and warned it will play difficult if forecasted winds arrive for the tournament.

“It’s a really nice golf course. I know there’s three par 5s on the front and three on the back. I’ve never played a golf course with six par 5s. I think that’s really cool and unique.

“I know the tee shots can be really tight if the wind picks up, which I know it’s supposed to. it’s going to be a tricky test.”

Can Nelly Korda put together another top week at an Aramco Team Series event? Let us how she will get on with a tweet.

amateurs in us open

Steve Carroll

Steve Carroll

A journalist for 25 years, Steve has been immersed in club golf for almost as long. A former club captain, he has passed the Level 3 Rules of Golf exam with distinction having attended the R&A's prestigious Tournament Administrators and Referees Seminar.

Steve has officiated at a host of high-profile tournaments, including Open Regional Qualifying, PGA Fourball Championship, English Men's Senior Amateur, and the North of England Amateur Championship. In 2023, he made his international debut as part of the team that refereed England vs Switzerland U16 girls.

A part of NCG's Top 100s panel, Steve has a particular love of links golf and is frantically trying to restore his single-figure handicap. He currently floats at around 11.

Steve plays at Close House, in Newcastle, and York GC, where he is a member of the club's matches and competitions committee and referees the annual 36-hole scratch York Rose Bowl.

Having studied history at Newcastle University, he became a journalist having passed his NTCJ exams at Darlington College of Technology.

What's in Steve's bag: TaylorMade Stealth 2 driver, 3-wood, and hybrids; TaylorMade Stealth 2 irons; TaylorMade Hi-Toe, Ping ChipR, Sik Putter.

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