CANBERRA - World number one Yani Tseng was left amazed by the ability of 15-year-old sensation Lydia Ko after the New Zealander carded a 10-under-par opening round 63 to take the lead at the women's Australian Open on Thursday.
Ko, who was born in South Korea and began playing golf aged five in Auckland, was in the company of Tseng (five-under 68) and American Michelle Wie (74) at the Royal Canberra Golf Club as she opened up a one-shot advantage over the field.
"She still looks 15, I don't know how she hits the ball that well," Taiwan's Tseng said in a news release.
"I wasn't even that close to her when I was 15. It is very interesting to see her play, and I really enjoyed playing with her today too.
"I think she pushed me up a little bit too, at first she made birdie and I don't want to lose, I want to make birdie too... but at nine she was on fire and I dropped back, she was on fire." Ko became the youngest winner of a women's European Tour event last Sunday. She was also the youngest winner of a professional event aged 14 in January 2012 and the youngest Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) Tour winner in August.
"When you hit a good round it makes it better, but Yani and Michelle, we had a few good conversations so I think that made it more enjoyable," said Ko.