Lydia Ko / Canadian Open Trophy with Royal Canadian Mounties /cbssports.com Lydia Ko the New Zealand World Number One Amateur player, and winner of last years LPGA Tour Canadian Open, starts her 2013 season off at the Australia Amateur Championships, in Melbourne tomorrow. Lydia is the defending Champion. The 15-year-old New Zealand sportswoman of the year candidate, and world's leading female amateur, has not played a tournament since the Swinging Skirts Ladies World Masters in Taipei early last December. But according to her coach, Guy Wilson, the director of instruction at the New Zealand Institute of Golf, Lydia has been hard at it and not relaxing too much; " The only reason she got a day off on Christmas Day was because the courses were closed. She had New Year's Day off as well, otherwise there's been no real relaxing, it's been eight hours a day, seven days a week." Lydia has received funding from High Performance Sport New Zealand, it amounts to $230,000 NZ over the next two years. This cash injection makes it easier for her to participate in some of the prestigious tournaments in the United States and Europe. Coach Wilson is delighted; "She will play in all the Majors this year." He also stated that Lydia was looking forward to the challenges this year, and remaining the Ladies World Number One Amateur, but importantly continuing her education at her chosen college in the United States; "It's all important for her to continue to be the world No.1 amateur and have really good finishes so when she does turn pro she is as marketable as she is now. The good thing is she's playing in a lot more events with real profile, which should help her as well." Good Luck Lydia, we will be watching you !!!