Amateur Ko forfeits about $1 million in earnings


Karine Icher may have finished a distant second to Lydia Ko in Canada, but she still walked away with first-place money – $300,000, to be exact.

It’s the second consecutive year that Ko has been unable to claim the big paycheck because of her amateur status, and the 16-year-old bristled Sunday when asked if she has thought about how much money she has left on the table over the past year and a half. After all, she has two victories and four other top-10 finishes.

“I know I’m not going to get the money, so I don’t really care,” she said after winning the CN Canadian Women’s Open.

“You don’t care?” a reporter asked.

“I don’t care,” Ko said. “I don’t care. I can say that a couple times more, if you want.”

Ko has made all 14 cuts on the LPGA circuit, and 24 in a row in all pro events, but has forfeited nearly $1 million ($970,000) in estimated earnings.

“I’ve got some people above me like my mom and dad, they’re the boss,” she said Sunday. “They’re going to help me to make the right decision and to turn pro at what time. I think as I’m only 16 still, it’s quite hard to make huge decisions. When I turn pro, it’s like a job. Money is all about it and everything like that, every shot counts.”