Top coach tears into Lydia Ko's "ignorant" parents

Lydia Ko

David Leadbetter has launched an extraordinary broadside at the parents of Lydia Ko, blaming them for the former world No.1’s slump in form.

Former child prodigy Ko, 22, has won 15 times on the LPGA – but only once in the last three years. She also missed the cut in the last two major championships and has fallen to 24th on the women’s world rankings.

At the time of writing, she’s 39th on the LPGA’s Race To CME, with only three top-10 finishes to show for her 16 starts this season.

The root of the problem? According to her former coach Leadbetter, it's her parents.

• USGA announces major change for amateurs

• 8 big names who have lost their tour cards

"It really is a very sad situation to observe," Leadbetter told a radio station in Ko’s native New Zealand. "Her team have to be thinking that they have made some huge mistakes taking an unbelievably talented player and turning her into ordinary.

• BBC presenter under fire for Sky Sports criticism

"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.

WATCH - HOW TO HIT A FLOP SHOT LIKE PHIL

"I'm angry, I'm sad because to me I know what she's capable of doing. And to see her play like this, it's just very sad to see."

• TS1 or TS4... which Titleist driver is right for you?

After three successful years together, Ko fired Leadbetter in December 2016 at the end of a season in which the Kiwi won four times. He blamed her parents for the surprise sacking then and doesn’t appear to have changed his view in the near three years since.

• Golfers, rejoice! We've just found your dream home

"I think her parents need to sort of let her go and do her thing. She's 22 years of age now,” added Leadbetter. “She could control her own career. She should know what's best for her.

“She's not a 12-year-old anymore. They need to let her go, let her fly, let her leave the nest so to speak and find her own way. If she can do that, I mean yeah we could see Lydia back."

Share this Article

share-logo
twitter-logo facebook-logo

Latest Videos See all videos right arrow

play button
EPIC SPEED vs MAVRIK vs EPIC FLASH - Should you be upgrading your Callaway driver?
Callaway
play button
HAS PING MADE ITS BEST EVER GAME IMPROVEMENT IRON? - G425 vs G410 vs G400
Ping
play button
ARE THESE DRIVERS REALLY BETTER THAN EVER BEFORE? – TaylorMade SIM2 driver review
TaylorMade
play button
IS THIS THE FASTEST DRIVER WE’VE EVER TESTED??? - Callaway Epic Speed, MAX & MAX LS review
Callaway
See all videos right arrow

Golf News

"I know I can defend my title" says Lucas Herbert
The bag tweak every high handicapper needs to make
Path to Victory Si Woo Kim - Swing Analysis
Win a Motocaddy M1 DHC electric trolley
R&A to team up with Niall Horan and Modest! Golf

Other Top Stories

Tiger Woods: Inside his $41million Florida mansion
The very best pubs in St Andrews
The Scottish Golf Course Emoji Quiz!
24 lies every bad golfer tells
Doug Sanders: The extraordinary life of golf's original playboy

Quick Fault 'n' Fixes See all videos right arrow

play button
Increase your shaft lean for more consistency
Watch
play button
A quick drill from Denis Pugh that will help your game
Watch
play button
Load up the right side for more power
Watch
play button
The correct grip is essential to good ball striking
Watch
See all videos right arrow