Retired South Korean golf legend Pak Se-ri said Thursday hosting a US junior tournament has given her a valuable experience.
The inaugural Se Ri Pak Junior Championship was staged at Butte Creek Country Club in Chico, California, from Monday to Thursday.
Although the 39-year-old hosted a couple of South Korean events, the Se Ri Cup Junior Championship and Se Ri Pak Invitational on the Korea LPGA Tour -- this was her first tournament with the American Junior Golf Association.
Pak Se-ri (Yonhap)
"Although I've hosted couple of events in South Korea, it gives me a different meaning to host a golf tournament on US soil," Pak said. "I learned many things which I didn't know about."
Pak said what feels most rewarding is that she gave an opportunity to young South Korean golfers to compete on US golf courses. For this year's tournament, three South Korean players entered the competition and took the top three spots.
"It's not easy for (South Korean) junior golfers to compete at a tournament in the US," she said. "I'm happy that they achieved good results, but what I'm really happy is that I offered them a priceless experience."
When asked if whether the South Korean golfers dominant performance may have bothered other junior golfers here, Pak said it is not a big problem.
"I think other golfers would have stimulated by their performance," she said. "It gave an impression that top-class US-based golfers should participate in Se Ri Pak Junior Championship."
Pak, who counts five majors among her 25 LPGA titles, said she will make her tournament better next year.
"We just made a start with this tournament, so for next year, we're working with the AJGA to host the event on a better course with many good golfers," she said. "We are also considering making a change in South Korean golfers' participation in this tournament." (Yonhap)