The whole of Korea has been shaken by the cheating of a rising star in the world of women’s golf.
The person who caused the problem is 19-year-old Yoon In-ah, nicknamed the “long-hitting queen. She is a fast driver, averaging 263 yards, the best among all players. She has risen to stardom with her first victory at the EverColoragen Queen’s Crown, a first division tour event held in mid-July.
On July 25, the next heroine candidate was found to be cheating. Yoon In-ah issued the following apology through her management office.
On June 16, the first day of the Korea Women’s Open, my tee shot went to the right on the 15th hole. While I was looking for my ball, I heard people saying that the ball was in the deep rough in front of me, so I mistakenly thought it was mine and proceeded to play. I realized on the green at the 15th hole that it was not my ball. However, I could not decide what to do in a situation I had never experienced before, so I took no action and continued playing. As a player, that is something I should not have done, and I have no excuse for it.
Normally, if a player reports an errant ball before holing out, he is given a two-stroke penalty, but Yoon In-ha did not take any action. However, Yoon In-ha did not take any action. Furthermore, he kept this fact from the public for a month.
At first, however, public opinion was sympathetic to the young player’s mistake. It was not until later that the maliciousness of the situation was revealed. According to reports in Korean newspapers, “After playing the ball incorrectly, the caddie advised him to play the ball with a two-stroke penalty, but he did not listen to the advice and played on. It was also revealed that her coach and parents knew of this fact, and the cover-up, which also involved the adults around her, was highly controversial.
Yoon In-ah announced that she would withdraw from the rest of the tour. She is currently awaiting punishment from the Korean Women’s Professional Golf Association. She could be suspended indefinitely from the tour in the future, but it would be a shame to lose her natural talent and talent in this way.
Winning is the highest priority” in the Korean golf world.
The Dong-a Ilbo newspaper reported, “The reality is that the competition is fierce, and an atmosphere of supremacy over winning is prevailing. This must be changed.
In fact, the Korean women’s golf industry is even more competitive than Japan’s. The Japanese women’s tour has a two-division system, but Korea has a three-division tour. With 60 players seeded in the first division, there are only a handful of winners.
In addition, the presence of family members is a notable feature of the Korean golf scene. Parents always accompany their young players when they are competing. Perhaps as a metaphor for the parents’ dedication to golf education, there is a saying in Korea that is not even a joke: “One year can break a family’s bank account.
If you think your family will go broke in a year, go to a casino; if you think you will go broke in 10 years, let your children play golf.
In other words, if you want to make a lot of money, give your children an elite education in golf. Of course, not all players will succeed. When they do, the victory-oriented atmosphere and pressure of parents, sponsors, and others involved can drive them away. It sounds nice to say that “the whole family is working toward one goal,” but it is no exaggeration to say that in Yoon In-ah’s case, the cheating was the result of excessive pressure to win.
This incident has created a heavy atmosphere on the Korean Women’s Tour, but it was a reminder that the responsibility lies not only with the players themselves, but also with their parents and other people involved in allowing them to play golf. First of all, we are awaiting the results of Yoon In-ah’s disciplinary action.
Interview and writing： Myung-Woo Kim Photo： KLPGA