TOP 30 PLAYERS TO WATCH
No. 18: Si Woo Kim
The reigning PLAYERS champ hoping his back will hold up in 2018
December 13, 2017
Si Woo Kim caps off bogey-free round to win THE PLAYERS
By Cameron Morfit, PGATOUR.COM
Si Woo Kim has always been the youngest and the best.
In 2012, he became the youngest player to get through the PGA TOUR Qualifying Tournament at 17 years, 5 months and 6 days old. He was the youngest winner on TOUR in 2016 when he broke through at the Wyndham Championship, and last season he became the youngest to hoist THE PLAYERS Championship trophy at 21 years, 10 months.
His goals for 2018?
“I’d like to grab my third win,” Kim said during the PGA TOUR’s recent visit to his home in South Korea. “Also, I would like to play well for THE PLAYERS. I heard that the winner of that tournament has never finished in the top 15 the next year after winning.
“I would love to be the first.”
Despite his star turn at the Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass, Kim endured persistent back problems and compiled a bittersweet 2017 season, making 14 cuts, missing 10, and withdrawing six times in 30 starts. He didn’t make it to the TOUR Championship and finished 54th in the FedExCup before going 1-2-0 in the International Team’s lopsided Presidents Cup loss.
On the bright side, Kim injected some much-needed International spark when he shushed the crowd during his hard-fought singles loss to Daniel Berger at Liberty National. And those pesky back problems give Kim something in common with another former child prodigy who is hoping to stay healthy in 2018.
“I am happy to see Tiger back,” Kim said, “and I would like to play with Tiger Woods in 2018, since he has been my hero since I started playing golf.”
BY THE NUMBERS
How Si Woo Kim ranked in Strokes Gained statistics last season on the PGA TOUR.
Current 2017-18 position: 29th
Playoff appearances: 2
TOUR Championship appearances: 1
Best result: 17th (2016)
INSIGHTS FROM THE INSIDERS
PGATOUR.COM’s Insiders offer their expert views on what to expect from Si Woo Kim in 2018.
TOUR INSIDER by Ben Everill
I was going to write off Si Woo Kim after his erratic performances last season despite his enormous win at THE PLAYERS Championship. But after seeing his efforts in the Presidents Cup and getting a closer insight into the man himself, I have changed my tune. It’s only a matter of time before Kim’s consistency is unleashed on the TOUR and he joins the other young stars as a constant menace on the leaderboards.
FANTASY INSIDER by Rob Bolton
For gamers who have been at it for a few years, he's the answer to the European Tour's Victor Dubuisson. Oft-injured and infrequently in contention, neither Kim nor Dubuisson can ever be ruled out as a serious threat because of their seemingly random moments of sheer brilliance. That doesn't translate into a normal heart rate for investors, but it sure is surreal. Kim belongs only on full-season rosters in which you can surround him with commodities.
EQUIPMENT INSIDER by Jonathan Wall
Mixed set of TaylorMade P-Series irons includes P770 (3-4) and P750 Tour Proto (5-9). Uses a 46-degree Titleist Vokey Design SM6 pitching wedge instead of one that matches his iron set. Kim believes the Vokey version has grooves that are better suited for the rough. Scotty Cameron 009M Prototype putter is made from a soft carbon steel that improves sound and feel.
STYLE INSIDER by Greg Monteforte
Kim’s style is much like his game -- sneaky good. We don’t see many flashy looks from him. Instead, he takes a less-is-more approach to his fashion by sticking with conservative colors and classic styles. In the footwear department, Kim experimented with a casual, spikeless shoe this fall, which may signal a departure from the cleated kicks he typically laces up.