Webb patient for overdue majors win
Who is the best player in the world not to win a major (yet)? Nowadays, David Duval would be the chorus of the majority; however, someone with even stronger credentials is arguably Karrie Webb, the 24-year-old Australian player who has dominated the US LPGA Tour this season.
Webb heads into this week's US Women's Open at Old Waverly Golf Club in Mississippi aiming to finally get her name off that dubious list. A career winner of 13 tournaments on the US circuit, Webb's form this year overshades even Duval's exploits. Webb has won four times and has finished in the top 10 in the 11 tournaments that she has played in. For good measure, she created a world record score for a woman when winning her native Australian Women's Masters with a 26-under-par total of 262 in March.
This week's major in the American Deep South presents Webb with an opportunity to realise a dream. "My career goals are to try to win as many majors as I can," she said. "I think I have put too much pressure on myself before, and that is when I don't have enough patience. If I give myself a chance this week, that would be great. If I win, it would be unbelievable."
Last year, at Blackwolf Run, the best total was six-over-par 290 (by South Korea's Se Ri Pak and amateur Jenny Chuasiriporn).
Webb's form this season makes her the hottest favourite in years. "It is a matter of timing and playing well," she conceded. "I have thought, `how am I going to play so bad that I'm not in contention?' I have felt like some of the tournaments this year I've played pretty mediocre, scratched my way around and I'm still right there." So, it's obvious she has the confidence, but has she got the patience?
Last year's winner showed enormous patience. In fact, Pak's win made her the winner of the longest ever US Women's Open - she won at the 20th extra hole. Since then, however, the player (who split with coach David Leadbetter) has struggled under the enormous pressure and expectations put on her by supporters at home in South Korea.
Meanwhile, Chuasiriporn, last year's runner-up, has decided to join the professional ranks and will make her paid debut in this week's championship.