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
HOW TO PLAY BUNKER SHOTS LIKE A PRO
Bunker Play
play button
INSIDE THE SWING OF TOMMY FLEETWOOD | SWING ANALYSIS
Tommy Fleetwood
play button
THE CORRECT WAY TO REPAIR A PITCH MARK
Pitch Mark
play button
SHOULD YOU BE USING HONMA GOLF CLUBS? – TR21 X & T//WORLD GS review
Honma
See all videos right arrow

Golf News

REVEALED: The story behind *that* golf course punch-up
WATCH - Si Woo Kim suffers brutal luck at RBC Heritage
Colin Gillies takes new role at Affordable Golf
Jose Maria Olazabal "proud" of Masters performance
Robert MacIntyre hoping for perfect sign-off to US 'road trip'

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
The correct grip pressure
Watch
play button
Put your golf swing into fifth gear
Watch
play button
Load up the right side for more power
Watch
play button
Get your alignment correct for more consistency
Watch
See all videos right arrow