The end of an era as Lydia Ko turns professional

Lydia Ko’s decision to turn professional marks the end of arguably the most dominant period in the history of women’s amateur game. Ko wasn’t just the world number one – she was head and shoulders above the rest.

Ko made her announcement on Twitter on October 22, thus ending her long run as number one on the World Amateur Golf Ranking. The New Zealander recently collected the 2013 Mark H. McCormack Medal as world number one for the third successive time.

The 16-year-old New Zealander arrives in the professional game with two-LPGA titles under her belt. In August she won her second successive CN Canadian Women’s Open. She followed on from that with a second place finish in the Evian Championship, her fifth major championship of the season.

Ko made history in 2012 when she became the youngest ever winner of a professional golf tournament, winning the New South Wales Open on the Australian Ladies Professional Golf Tour at the age of 14. She won the Australian Women’s Amateur and was runner-up in the Australian Women’s Stroke Play Championship. She won the U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship and received the silver medal as the leading amateur at the U.S. Women’s Open.

In 14 professional tournaments this season, Ko had nine top 10 finishes. Her Canadian victory gives her a spot in the LPGA’s CME Group Titleholders in Naples, Florida, next month, where she is expected to make her pro debut.

You can watch the video in which Ko announces her intention to turn Professional here.