BEDMINSTER, N.J. — It’s been 22 events — almost a full calendar year — since Lydia Ko last lifted a trophy on the LPGA Tour. Yet the signs of a return to the winners’ circle were there, quietly bubbling under the surface.
During the first round of the U.S. Women’s Open on Thursday, Ko’s game finally clicked into place. Her opening round 68 featured six birdies and leaves her two shots back of the rain-shortened first round lead held by her playing partner, Shanshan Feng.
“I tried to give myself as many birdie opportunities as possible and take advantage of the calmer conditions,” Ko said. “It doesn’t matter if you’re playing good or not, you always have to stay positive and stay patient.”
“Positive and patient” has been Ko’s mantra throughout her return to form this season, and this week, it could be the recipe to navigating a difficult U.S. Open setup at Trump National Golf Club.
Eighteen months ago, Lydia Ko was the undisputed queen of women’s golf.
After collecting three wins in her first…