‘Almost Broke My Wrist Today’ - Korda On ‘Really Tough’ AIG Women’s Open Heather

The 25-year-old ran into difficulties during a practice round before the final Major of the year at Walton Heath

Nelly Korda speaks to the media before the 2023 AIG Women's Open
Nelly Korda says playing out of the Walton Heath heather is 'really tough'
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Nelly Korda is going in search of her second Major title in this week’s AIG Women’s Open at Walton Heath in England.

However, in preparation for her latest attempt to add to her 2021 Women's PGA Championship title, she ran into difficulties during a practice round on the heathland course when trying to get her ball out of the heather.

“Yeah, almost broke my wrist today,” explained Korda in her press conference after her round. “It's not easy. It's really bouncy. If you get a good lie, then maybe but I would say 95 per cent of the time you will be pitching out with a 58 degree just to try to get it back into play. It's really tough to get out of that.”

If Korda is to win the tournament, it won’t just be the heather she needs to be wary of. She also admitted the changing conditions of the course could be a factor.

She said: “It's very soft, especially yesterday. I mean, completely different golf course from yesterday today. But it plays pretty long, and it's going to be a good challenge depending on what the weather is going to be like, if the golf course is going to firm up by the end of the week it could play completely different to the practice rounds.”

The American, who recently reclaimed the World No.1 spot from Jin Young Ko, also explained that the course will offer a far different challenge to those she is more used to in her homeland. She continued: “I would say it's a completely different style of golf. I would say depending on the weather and style of golf course, you have to have a lot of creativity out here.

“You have to hit shots you normally wouldn't on other golf courses. Typically with golf courses in the US, it's very tight off - and you have to hit it high into the greens, and here you actually can chase it up. I mean, here you have to hit low bullets out here so the wind doesn't affect it.”

Korda’s comments come after several other pros expressed their thoughts on Walton Heath’s heather. Rose Zhang said it was “beautiful but it's terrible to be in” while defending champion Ashleigh Buhai said: “I don't know what those little purple flowers are for but you don't want to be in those.”

As for Korda, she heads into the tournament with a win in the Aramco Team Series London still fresh in her memory. That came last month at the Centurion Club, and the 25-year-old explained she hopes it offers her an extra comfort level this week.

She said: “Yeah, hopefully. It's a completely different kind of golf course. But that week was so much fun. The wind was brutal and the weather was just awful, and the shot-shaping and the low shots that I got to hit was a lot of fun. I think I'm OK doing that once or twice a year. I wouldn't want to do it every week, to play in that weather, but it's a lot of fun.”

Mike Hall

Mike has over 25 years of experience in journalism, including writing on a range of sports throughout that time, such as golf, football and cricket. Now a freelance staff writer for Golf Monthly, he is dedicated to covering the game's most newsworthy stories. 

He has written hundreds of articles on the game, from features offering insights into how members of the public can play some of the world's most revered courses, to breaking news stories affecting everything from the PGA Tour and LIV Golf to developmental Tours and the amateur game. 

Mike grew up in East Yorkshire and began his career in journalism in 1997. He then moved to London in 2003 as his career flourished, and nowadays resides in New Brunswick, Canada, where he and his wife raise their young family less than a mile from his local course. 

Kevin Cook’s acclaimed 2007 biography, Tommy’s Honour, about golf’s founding father and son, remains one of his all-time favourite sports books.