KOHLER, Wis. -

The U. S. Women's Open begins Thursday at Blackwolf Run in Kohler, Wisconsin.

Se Ri Pak's victory there in 1998 changed the LPGA forever. Her thrilling victory in a 20-hole playoff inspired other South Korean golfers to follow in her footsteps to pro careers in the United States.

South Korean golfers today are the most dominant group on tour. They have won three of the last four U. S. Opens and 2011 champion So Yeon Ryu said Tuesday that Pak is her hero.

Cristie Kerr, the 2007 champion, says she likes how global women's' golf has become.