Sorenstams Just Misunderstood


WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Annika Sorenstam has come under scrutiny over the past nine years for just about everything one can imagine: the way she dresses, her personality, and single-mindedness.
It turns out she is just misunderstood.
In Sweden, youre not supposed to be loud and youre not supposed to show emotion, and thats just the way Swedes are, she said.
I enjoy certain parts (of the limelight). I enjoy talking about my game and my round. Whats tough is when people expect you to do this and that and there are certain things I dont think you can ask of somebody.
The toughest part of her career is the pressure she feels to be someone that shes not.
'Well, they want to mold you into ' in this case, its Nancy Lopez, Sorenstam said of the fans.
'Shes a great example of a perfect athlete in so many ways, somebody who can perform, smile, charisma, you name it, and she had it all. I would love to have what she has. But I have hopefully other qualities and I think youve just go to recognize that and say, hey, I do what I do, I love what I do, but I try to make womens golf as popular as possible.
The first time Sorenstam truly realized what was expected of her was after her win at the 1995 U.S. Womens Open: I didnt really know what to expect. Ive always worked on my game, but I never worked on what happens when you win a tournament, the responsibilities.
Sorenstam, who has recorded 41 LPGA Tour victories in less than a decade, had to learn what was expected of her the hard way.
I think today, seven years later, Im obviously more aware that I have some obligations,' she said.
The only thing that is immune to criticism is her golf game. She has set or tied 19 records this year alone. Im just trying to be me and play golf and let my clubs do the talking, and thats when I feel most comfortable and most at ease, Sorenstam said.
This week, with a chance to add three more, Sorenstam is showing no mercy on the 30-woman field at the ADT Championship held at Trump International Golf Club.
First, she has a chance at becoming the first woman to reach $11 million in career earnings as long as she finishes this week with a tie for fifth or better.
Secondly, Sorenstam has recorded 43 rounds in the 60s. If she posts three out of four rounds in the 60s this week, she will break Kelly Robbins' 1997 season record of 46 rounds.
And lastly, Sorenstam will break the lowest scoring average for one season, a record she set last year when she finished the season at 69.42. She is currently at 68.69, needing a total of 329 strokes (41-over-par) or less in four rounds to break the record.
Regardless of all that has been said about Annika, the 32-year-old continues to do things her way.
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