Lydia Ko splits with coach of 11 years

Guy Wilson, Lydia Ko
Getty Images
Guy Wilson has coached the 16-year-old Ko since she was five years old.

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) --- Teenage golf star Lydia Ko has split with the only coach she has had since she took up the sport as a 5-year-old.

Guy Wilson, who has worked with the 16-year-old Ko for 11 years, issued a statement saying he was "incredibly disappointed" the partnership is over. Ko hasn't publicly commented on the decision.

Michael Yim, her agent at IMG, said Monday that Ko worked with various teachers at the Leadbetter Academy in Florida before going to Taiwan for the Swinging Skirts tournament, an event she won two weeks ago in her second start as a professional. Kim said Ko plans to meet with other teachers before deciding on a full-time coach.

Ko has won five professional tournaments -- four as an amateur -- while coached by Wilson, who said it had "been an honor to help develop Lydia into the No. 4 golfer in the world."

"When I first met her the golf clubs were taller than she was and she didn't know the first thing about a driver or a putter, but now she has one of the most envied swings in the women's golf world," Wilson said.

Born in South Korea and raised in New Zealand, Ko won the Women's Canadian Open at 15 last year to become the youngest winner in LPGA Tour history and successfully defended the title this year.

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