Neither has she been thrown off balance by celebrity. "I'm the same person I was before the Open," she says. What kind of person is that? "Just a normal Joe Shmoe."
Make that an extraordinary Joe Shmoe. Since taking Pak an extra 20 holes in July, Chuasiriporn has finished runner-up to Grace Park in the U.S. Amateur and led the U.S. to victory in the World Amateur Team in Chile. In her spare time she attended classes in cognitive psychology. "She's probably been away from school more than any athlete in Duke history," says Duke's golf coach, Dan Brooks. "But when she's here, she's buried in academics."
Chuasiriporn's appeal is not unlike Kuchar's—both win fans with their smiles and good manners—and it was surely kismet that they went out dancing when both were in Santiago for the Worlds. "She's amazing the way she takes everything with a smile," says Kuchar, without a trace of irony. "In Chile she was one of the social forces. She made a million friends and still won by seven shots."
Rarely does maturity come in such a lighter-than-air package. Those close to Chuasiriporn say she inherited her distrust of shortcuts from her Thai-immigrant parents, who own and operate Baltimore's Bangkok Place restaurant. Brooks sharpens the point, noting that the Chuasiriporns lived for years in cramped quarters behind a small market they owned. "Jenny didn't have parents who left for work in the morning," he says. "Their physical closeness taught her: You work hard, you succeed." He adds, "She's appreciative."
Right now she appreciates Duke. "I love it here," she said during a recent golf-free stretch at school. "I'm trying to make the most of the time I have left." Meaning...long nights at the library?
She laughed. "I'll be going to a lot of basketball games, too."
"Sometimes golf turns into a hard mistress." The man making this observation is Ken Rose—father, swing coach and traveling companion to Justin Rose. It is a Tuesday in Auckland, New Zealand, and Rose is watching his son play a practice round on a windblown course bordered by sheep farms and riven by fern gullies. The Roses are a long, long way from their home in Hook, a village near London.
Exaltation to exile. That's how it must seem to Justin, who turned pro in July, when he turned 18, and could turn into an old man by Christmas. In 10 events since his improbable fourth at the Open—the best finish there by an amateur in 45 years—Rose has yet to pick up a pence of prize money. In November, at the European tour qualifying school, he shot 80 in the final round and failed to earn his card for '99. Now he is dying Down Under. The week before, in the Australian Open, he blew a two-foot putt on the 17th and made double bogey on the 18th to miss the 36-hole cut by a stroke. "As an amateur he used to make professional cuts very easily," says Ken, "but the pressures are different now, and he's under the microscope as well."
The scrutiny began when Justin shot 66 in a second-round gale at Royal Birkdale. It heightened when he holed a 45-yard wedge shot on the 72nd hole, causing the grandstands to erupt. "That was a bit of a fairy tale, wasn't it?" says Justin, grinning at the memory.
The very fact that it is a memory is what sets Rose apart from other rookie pros. They are pursuing dreams. He is trying to catch the next wave. "Maybe all that excitement at the Open got to me a little bit," he says, "and I lost my form."