DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — It’s been three, long months away from competitive golf for Duke rising junior golfer Gina Kim.
The Chapel Hill native has been preparing for the Carolinas Women’s Amateur, the first tournament to be played since the COVID-19 pandemic shut everything down.
“Obviously the pandemic is a serious issue,” said Kim. “But I think with golf you’re able to be kind of far apart from each other and play your own game. I’m actually kind of excited to be able to do this again.”
Kim’s sophomore year at Duke was cut short after six tournaments, her Blue Devils unable to defend their 2019 NCAA title. Now it’s back to work for Kim at a tournament she has yet to play in.
“This week is normally when they have the U.S. Open or I’m usually at a different tournament,” Kim explained. “So I never had the chance to be able to play this one. I’m actually grateful to finally be out here and play this tournament because I’ve always wanted to.”
Last year at this time she missed the Carolinas Amateur while making her mark at the U.S. Women’s Open where she was low amateur.
Fast forward to now where the past three months have been anything but normal for Kim. Her home course shut down and searching for places to play, Kim instead, has placed her focus on the areas of her game she feels needs the work.
“On a normal basis I wouldn’t be able to work on it because of so many tournaments that have been going around,” said Kim. “So I’ve just been taking the time and really trying to focus on what I think I need to work on so I’m actually feeling very prepared for this tournament.”
For Kim and all the other players at the Amateur it’s a chance to finally get back to competitive golf.
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