Ina Yoon is all smiles before this week’s Women’s NSW Open. Photo and text by Dave Tease, Golf NSW

NSW Amateur Champion Ina Yoon is back in Australia and ready to take on the professionals in her very first appearance in a pro tournament at this week’s Women’s NSW Open at Coffs Harbour Golf Club.

“It’s very exciting to come back and play the NSW Open.

“It is my first time playing in a professional tournament,” Yoon said with the assistance of an interpreter.

The 14-year-old took out the Women’s NSW Amateur title at Royal Canberra Golf Club at the beginning of February in a thrilling 36-hole final against NSW representative Doey Choi.

“I was very happy to win. It was a good final,” she smiled.

Yoon is in no doubt what her goal for the tournament is this week.

When asked about her chances of emulating the achievement of 2012 Women’s NSW Open Champion Lydia Ko, who won this title as a 14-year-old, she replied: “My form is not bad, so I want to win.”

Yoon identified the current US Womens Open champion Park Sung-Hyun as her favourite player and added: “I like Lydia Ko too. I would like to win this tournament like Lydia did.”

Ko won the 2012 Women’s NSW Open aged 14 years, nine months and six days, when the event was part of the Australian Ladies Professional Golf schedule only, before becoming co-sanctioned by the LET for the first time in 2018.

In July 2017, Thai amateur Atthaya Thitikul became the youngest ever winner on the Ladies European Tour by claiming victory in the Ladies European Thailand Championship aged 14 years, four months and 19 days.

This Sunday, Yoon, who was born on May 2, 2003, will be aged 14 years, 10 months and two days.