Chan Kim, who qualified for 2 majors in 6 days, ready for second leg at Open

Michael Madrid-USA TODAY Sports

Chan Kim, who qualified for 2 majors in 6 days, ready for second leg at Open

PGA Tour

Chan Kim, who qualified for 2 majors in 6 days, ready for second leg at Open

SOUTHPORT, England – Last May, Chan Kim had one of the all-time six-day stretches in golf.

He shot 69-68 at Ono Golf Club in Japan to qualify for the U.S. Open at Erin Hills. About 120 hours later, Kim earned another major berth, this time for the British Open at Royal Birkdale, as the 27-year-old Gilbert, Ariz., resident shot 68-70-67-68 at JFE Setonakai Golf Club to win the Japan Tour’s Mizuno Open.

“It’s hard to argue that hasn’t been one of my best stretches,” Kim said.

Ya’ think? Only Kim hasn’t slowed down. Sure, he missed the cut at Erin Hills, shooting 6 over to miss by five shots. But just two weeks ago he won again on the Japan Tour, taking home the title at the Shigeo Nagashima Invitational.

Now, Kim enters his first Open Championship with some major experience and plenty of confidence in tow.

“I think the biggest thing is trying to stay more aggressive,” Kim said. “U.S. Open being my first major, I think I was pretty tentative over a lot of putts and a lot of shots. That didn’t work out. With the length I have off the tee, I should’ve done a little better. But everything has turn around. I won again in Japan and I feel good coming into here (at Royal Birkdale).”

While Kim’s name isn’t too familiar on major-championship leaderboards, those in the Phoenix area certainly have heard of him. He played one year of golf at Arizona State, logging eight tournaments for the Sun Devils, including the 2009 NCAA Championship, in which Arizona State finished runner-up to Oklahoma State.

Kim has remained in the Phoenix area. He plays out of several golf courses, including Grayhawk Golf Club, Mesa Country Club and TPC Scottsdale, where his instructor Andy Patnou is based. When he wants to stay closer to home, Kim plays at local Kokopelli Golf Club.

He’d like to be nearer to home more often. He’s been a globetrotter since leaving school, but Kim hopes that will change. With a security blanket in Japan, Kim plans to play Web.com Tour Q-School this fall.

“The main goal because I live in the (United) States is to play the PGA Tour,” Kim said. “My game just fits the U.S. better. Out in Japan, I don’t get to hit too many drivers.”

The lengthy Kim likely won’t use too many drivers this week at Royal Birkdale, either. But considering the stage that he’s on, this being the game’s oldest major championship, Kim won’t be bothered. He’s enjoying the moment, and hoping to put together what would be his best stretch of golf, hands down – two wins in three weeks, the latter of the Open variety.

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