A huge game change has occurred in the Korean Professional Golf Association (KPGA). The game of Korean men’s golf is expected to become more exciting this season. ‘Monster’ Kim Kyung-tae (37. Shinhan Financial Group) returns to the KPGA Korean Tour in 2023. It is a return to Korea as a permanent seed.
Currently, there are five permanent seed holders: Choi Sang-ho (68), Choi Gyeong-ju (53, SK Telecom), Han Jang-sang (83), Park Nam-shin (64)토토사이트, Yang Yong-eun (51), and Kim Gyeong-tae. Permanent seed is a qualification given to ‘a person with a career record of 20 or more victories and winners of four major tournaments’.
6 wins in Korea, 14 wins in Japan, Kim Gyeong-tae “Winning the Shinhan Donghae Open before retirement”
Kim Kyung-tae has 6 wins in Korea and 14 wins in Japan. As befits the nickname ‘monster’, the footprint Kim Kyung-tae has accumulated over the years is amazing. He was brilliant from his amateur days. From 2003 to 2006, he wore the Taegeuk mark, and in 2005 and 2006, he won the ‘Japan Amateur Championship’ consecutively.
He also reached the top at the ‘Pocari Energen Open’ and ‘Samsung Benest Open’, which he entered as an amateur in 2006. In December of that year, he won gold medals in both the individual and team events at the ’15th Doha Asian Games’ and took the ‘Hwaryong peak’. It was the prelude to ‘Birth of a Monster’.
Kim Gyeong-tae, who made his debut on the tour in 2007 after conversion, won the first tournament of the season, the ‘Tomato Savings Bank Open’, and wrote the history of winning the debut match for the first time in KPGA history. Kim Kyung-tae also lifted the championship cup in the very next tournament, the GS Caltex Maekyung Open.
As soon as he debuted, his debut match and the championship he won until the very next tournament is the only record that no player has ever achieved. Of course, the same goes for his winning record on his debut. Kim Kyung-tae, who also won the 2007 ‘Samneung Apple City Open’ and achieved 3 wins in the first year of his debut season, swept the ‘Grand Prize’, ‘Prize King’, ‘Deokchun Award’, and ‘Myeongchun Award (Rookie Award)’ at the year-end awards ceremony. 2007 was colored by Kim Kyung-tae craze.
From 2008, he started conquest of Japan. He won three Japanese tours in 2010 and became the first Korean to become the Japan Tour ‘Prize Money King’. Until 2011, he also represented Korea at the Million Yards Cup, the International Team at the Presidents Cup in 2011, and the Asian Team at the Royal Trophy from 2011 to 2013. In 2015, he won 5 victories on the Japanese tour and won the Japan Tour ‘Grand Prize’ and ‘Prize Money King’. In the following year, 2016, he won 3 wins in 7 tournaments on the Japanese tour.
Kim’s most recent win was the 2019 Japan Tour ‘Casio World Open’. Kim Kyung-tae won 14 victories in Japan alone, including winning the Casio World Open. This is the record for the most wins on the Japanese Tour among Korean players. Until last year, the prize money Kim Gyeong-tae won in Japan was about 8.9 billion won (948,298,751 yen).
Like this, Kim Kyung-tae played a steady role going back and forth between Korea and Japan, but I couldn’t see Kim Gyeong-tae in Korea last year. He participated in 5 KPGA Korean Tour events in 2021 and lost his seed after passing the cut in only 1 event.
In 2022, he devoted himself to the Japanese tour and passed 7 tournaments, including “The Crowns”, where he tied for 29th out of 17 tournaments he participated in. It was definitely not the appearance of Kim Kyung-tae of the past, who was called a monster.
Kim Kyung-tae said, “There has been no domestic championship since 2011. He has been looking for opportunities to win several times, but his greed was excessive. I think it was because of the desire and impatience to win in Korea,” he said. “My goal is to win the KPGA Korean Tour before I retire. If I win, I hope it will be the ‘Shinhan Donghae Open’. Through this opportunity, I would like to express my gratitude to the executives and staff of Shinhan Financial Group who have been providing great help in various fields since his debut season. I will repay you by winning the ‘Shinhan Donghae Open’ as soon as possible.”
Kim Young-soo, 2022 KPGA Grand Prize, Prize Money King, Skill Development Award, 3 crownsThe strongest player in the 2022 KPGA was Kim Young-soo. He won two tournaments last year, accumulated 5915 Genesis points, won the Genesis Grand Prize, won 791.32 million won in prize money, and won three crowns, including the Skill Development Award selected by the Golf Journalists. The face-to-face confrontation between ‘the original strongest’ Kim Gyeong-tae and ‘2022 strongest’ Kim Young-soo is also expected to be another fun to heat up the KPGA this season.