Two-time major winner So Yeon Ryu announces retirement from professional golf
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Two-time major winner So Yeon Ryu announces retirement from professional golf

A photo of So Yeon Ryu

Two-time LPGA major championship winner So Yeon Ryu has announced her retirement from professional golf.

The 33-year-old South Korean posted a two-page handwritten letter to her Instagram account to announce her decision.

"I wanted to share one of the most significant decisions in my life with all of you today. Sadly, Chevron Championship will be my last game on the LPGA Tour," she wrote.

She last played on the LPGA Tour in October 2023 at the BMW Ladies Championship in South Korea.

Ryu won the Chevron in 2017, back when it was known as the ANA Inspiration, for her second major championship in a playoff against Lexi Thompson following Thompson receiving a controversial four-stroke penalty ahead of the Sunday final round.

Ryu broke through for her first major title in 2011 at the US Women's Open at the Broadmoor in Colorado, winning a three-hole, aggregate-score playoff against Hee Hyung Seo. The initial major win earned her LPGA membership.

In total, Ryu won six times on the LPGA Tour and another 10 times on the Korean LPGA. Her last win was the 2020 Korea Women’s Open. Ryu also won a variety of LPGA accolades, including the 2012 LPGA Rookie of the Year and 2017 LPGA Player of the Year awards. She was ranked No. 1 in the Rolex Rankings for 19 weeks in late 2017.

“After deciding to retire, I spent much time looking back on my career,” wrote Ryu. “So many memories came flooding back, and I felt so many emotions. But the more I thought about it, the more I was thankful for so many things. I am so grateful that I could do what I loved to do, day in and day out, and even make a career out of it.

"I am not going to lie; I had some hard patches, but despite some of the challenges, I truly enjoyed it all. And more than anything, I feel incredibly grateful for the love and support I’ve received from all of you throughout my career.”

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