Injury-returning Kim upsets Vajidan to take sole possession of second place on first day of playoffs
Kim Joo-hyung battled back from a bad start to sit in a tie for second place on the first day of the 2022-23 Playoffs (PO) on the United States Professional Golf (PGA) Tour.
Kim carded seven birdies and a bogey in the first round of the FedEx St. Jude Championship ($20 million purse) at TPC Southwind (Par 70) in Memphis, Tennessee, USA, on Monday (Nov. 11), shooting a 6-under 64.
That puts him in sole possession of second place, one shot behind leader Jordan Spieth (USA) at 7-under 63. The tournament, which is the first round of the FedExCup Playoffs, is open only to players ranked in the top 70 on the FedExCup Ranking.
Kim injured his ankle during last month’s Open and played with the injury on the final day of the Open. He missed the Wyndham Championship earlier this month as the defending champion after finishing runner-up in the Open.
Kim qualified for the first round of the playoff at No. 14 in the FedExCup standings. He started on the 10th hole (par-4) and was four strokes off the pace in the first half. In the second half, he recorded three consecutive birdies on holes 2-4.
After the first round, Kim said, “I played stress-free throughout the match. I got off to a good start,” he said, “I worked hard on my rehabilitation. It was a bit boring to be honest,” he said of his ankle. “As soon as I got back from England (after The Open), I had an MRI and was told that I had to be careful with my ankle. It was really hard when I was told I wouldn’t be able to play for a while.” 꽁머니
After about two weeks of rehabilitation, he said: “Coming out of rehab and coming to a match, it feels like a new season. It’s good to play well in my first round back.”
Kim Joo-hyung turned heads in this round by playing with the hem of his pants rolled up. Returning from an ankle injury, he played with his ankle exposed. “I try to walk on as flat a surface as possible. I don’t want to think about my ankle. It will take a few more weeks for it to heal completely. I’ll be careful and monitor my condition for the time being.”