Hosung Choi initially grabbed the attention of the golf world for his unique “fisherman swing.” But golf fans truly fell for what the 45-year-old does after he hits his shots. In stark contrast to the typical stoicism demonstrated by Tour pros, Choi watches his ball with a flourish. He twirls, and spins, and points, and hops on one leg. It all looks delightfully performative. But Choi said during a pre-tournament press conference at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am that there’s a more functional reason for his actions: mind control.
“I know sometimes after I’ve hit the ball I sometimes will the ball to go in the hole and in my mind I feel like that helps the ball go in the hole, so I’m going to keep doing that this week,” he said through a translator. “And I feel like in my mind the way I move my body, sometimes it feels like have I remote control that wills the ball to go in the hole, so I’m going to keep doing that, because I feel like it helps.”
Plenty of golfers use variations of the same strategy, of course. Nearly every player yells commands at his or her ball, whether it’s “Get up!” or “Get down!” or “Hit a house!” But the mythical quality surrounding Choi’s golf game feel closer to Matilda or Yoda than the frenetic mid-air chatter of Jordan Spieth. Check out some selections below:
ohhhh my hosung. the artistry! The pageantry! golf has never seen twirls such as these https://t.co/aYtf89sjyb
— Dylan Dethier (@dylan_dethier) December 22, 2018
— Asian Tour (@asiantourgolf) January 19, 2019
— Nick Taylor (@Nick_PGA) January 19, 2019
Hosung Choi is my new favorite golfer pic.twitter.com/nHuFQUTjt4
— Tee-k Kelly (@teekkelly) June 23, 2018
Hosung Choi has taken the lead early at the Singapore Open. Live on Golf Channel now. pic.twitter.com/yST7Mgj8y5
— Cbus Clubhouse (@CbusClubhouse) January 17, 2019
Hosung Choi tees off for Thursday’s opening round at 12:17 p.m. at Monterey Peninsula’s Shore Course. He’s paired with Chris O’Donnell, and the two are playing with Jerry Kelly and Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers.