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Easy does it: Lincicome defends anti-practice stance

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HARRISON, N.Y. – Brittany Lincicome is the first to tell you she doesn’t like to practice.

She likes to spend time fishing in her boat in the Gulf of Mexico. She likes spending time with her fiancé, Dewald Gouws. She likes her naps, too.

Lincicome doesn’t have a coach, either, hasn’t had a lesson in five years.

While it might not be the road map to success you would expect from a world-class player, it works great for Lincicome, especially in the majors. She climbed the leaderboard Saturday at the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship with a 4-under-par 69, moving up 13 spots into a tie for seventh. She made five consecutive birdies starting at the ninth hole.

Lincicome, 29, won the ANA Inspiration, the year’s first major. She won the Kraft Nabisco in 2009 and lost last year’s LPGA Championship in a playoff to Inbee Park. She is becoming a regular presence on leaderboards.

Lincicome’s approach begs a question, though: How good might she be if she worked more at her game?

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Lincicome said she asked her caddie, Missy Pederson, the same question at year’s start.

“I'm getting married at the end of the year, going to start a family, eventually,” Lincicome told Pederson. “If I kind of put in a real good couple years before I maybe retire, or backed away a little bit, do you think I could be better? Could I be No. 1?”

Lincicome was still pondering the question entering the year’s first major.

“And then I won ANA,” Lincicome said. “So I was like, maybe that doesn't work for me, because I didn't do anything different the week before I won ANA. I think it's just the way I play. If I hit too many balls, I don't feel good. Hitting 10 balls is better than hitting a hundred, because my concentration, I'm like a social butterfly. I lose concentration.”

Lincicome is comfortable with her approach.

“I feel like everyone has their way of doing it,” Lincicome said. “Like Juli Inkster or Lexi Thompson, they go out there and they need to hit balls for five hours at a time. I would have retired a long time ago, I think, if I would have done it that way, unfortunately. It's just different for everybody. Laura Davies is like my idol. She never goes to the range. She never plays practice rounds. I'm like, I'm going to take after her. She had a good career.”