Tiffany Chan Tsz-ching believes she has developed the mental fortitude to compete for a medal at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. The 27-year-old is in the middle of her most successful professional season on the LPGA Tour and cited her new sports psychologist as a big contributor. The goal for the four-day event (August 4-7) extends beyond simply doing better than her Olympic debut as an amateur five years ago. “I’m excited and honoured. Qualifying for the previous Olympics was an important achievement for Hong Kong golf. Qualifying as a pro was another small goal of mine,” said Chan, who sealed one of the 60 women’s tickets in June . “I was fortunate enough not to be too affected [by the Covid-19 pandemic]. There were around six to seven months without training and competitions and that affected my development, but thankfully the Tour returned last July and our schedule has since been 80-90 per cent as usual. I hope I can have a breakthrough moment and make history in Tokyo, to get a good result and even get a medal.” Chan will train in her US base of Las Vegas before flying direct to Tokyo next week. Though she “really wanted to return” to Hong Kong, the city’s mandatory two-week quarantines were simply too restrictive as she tries to peak both physically and psychologically. After securing her first-ever top 10 Tour finish in April, Chan feels she is on the cusp of unlocking another level. She is confident she will better her Rio 2016 Games result of 37th and keep up with the star-studded line-up in Tokyo. “So far the mental coach has been one of the biggest influences. We’ve been together for more than half a year and I’m seeing evidence of improved performances over time,” said Chan, who played her last pre-Olympics event alongside China’s Muni He in a team tournament in Michigan last week. “I’ve matured a lot since 2016. It’s very different from being an amateur in college and playing for the Hong Kong team. Being on the road and handling almost everything by myself has definitely helped me as a person and as a player, and I feel I can handle my emotions better on the golf course,” Chan said. “I’m really looking forward to comparing my Olympics performances. I hope to play fantastically – and much better than five years ago. “As an athlete, you’ve already failed if you don’t believe in yourself. That’s why we work so hard, to get good results and show that our performances still get better. I have to keep pushing no matter what. If I’m not supporting myself, then what am I doing here? View this post on Instagram A post shared by Tiffany Chan 陳芷澄 (@tiffchangolf) “We go to every competition with the mindset of winning it. Whether we can is another matter, but belief and hard work is so important. I will go in with a level head and winning mentality, as I do every week.” As one of the few to experience what Olympic-style golf is like – the sport was reintroduced to the Rio Games after more than a century – Chan identified two major differences. “There is less than half the number of participants in the Olympics – usually there are 140-150 people on Tour – and the Olympics also doesn’t have a cut rule, so all 60 will be playing all four days,” she said. “These rules make it less pressured psychologically, because usually we spend the first two days trying to qualify for the next rounds. Without it, I feel I can play better so I’m really hoping to get a good result.” Post-Olympics, Chan will fly to Scotland for the back nine of the LPGA Tour season. Though she admitted the travel is a stress – “sometimes I wake up and have to ask myself where I am, I’m not kidding” – she and her coach have set big goals. “It will be my fourth year and I still haven’t won an event yet. The minimum objective is to stay on Tour, which I am confident in. But I think I can go up another level,” she said. “The ultimate objective is to win the world championships. But to do that, I have to do everything I set myself in the short- to medium-term. My long-term goal is to start winning competitions until I get there.” The Olympic event will be played at the Kasumigaseki Country Club in Kawagoe, Saitama prefecture.