Golf Digest WomanMarch 23, 2012

Se Ri Pak: Venerable, but still relevant

CARLSBAD, Calif. -- Se Ri Pak forged the better part of her Hall of Fame career closer to its beginning, which might leave the impression that she has entered its twilight years. Yet she's only 34, and obviously is still a factor, as a second round 66 at La Costa Resort in the LPGA Tour's Kia Classic on Friday emphatically demonstrated. It gave her the lead, temporarily, at least (Yani Tseng was just getting her round started when Pak finished hers). Of Pak's 25 career victories, 22 came in her first seven years on the LPGA. She's won only three times since 2004, her last victory coming in the Bell Micro LPGA Classic in 2010.

Part of it is that she is a victim of her own success, of course. Pak is the South Korean responsible for launching the Asian revolution in women's golf, of which Taiwan's Yani Tseng is a part. The LPGA has never had such depth. Part of it is the expectations she has from having won so often. "That puts a lot of pressure on you," she said.

Meanwhile, Pak has the same goal she's always had. "Every single week I'm trying to get on top of the leaderboard and trying to win," she said. By her estimation, she's getting closer. "Actually, since last year, the end of the season, every tournament I feel really great about it," she said. "My swing's getting better and better each week, every tournament. If I make more putts, it will be great."

--John Strege