When Marina Alex notched her second career LPGA Tour victory at the Palos Verdes Championship in May, she did it with a clutch performance down the stretch, going one under on her final three holes to beat World No. 1 Jin Young Ko.
The win was especially meaningful for Alex not only because of the four-year gap since her lone previous title at the 2018 Portland Classic, but also because she had recently stepped away from the game for seven months to heal a herniated disc in her lower back.
“I didn’t think [this] was even a remote possibility that I was going to win ever again,” Alex said in her post-round press conference. “It’s amazing that it’s happened. I didn’t know if it was going to.”
“It’s validation,” Alex said. “People would be lying if they didn’t say that it’s not validation, because everyone can say to themselves, are you just a one-hit wonder? Did you win that one time, but are you really capable of winning?”
Alex said that it’s a question players often ask themselves, and finding the winner’s circle more than once is incredibly satisfying.
“There’s some self-doubt. Yeah, you’ve won, but are you going to do it again, and again?” Alex said. “There’s always that struggle: Am I that good, am I not that good? I think there’s a lot of doubt in there. So the second [win] I feel like puts a lot of people’s personal doubt and kind of pushes it aside.”