Monday, October 31, 2016

Shanshan wins LPGA Malaysia for the second time

Shanshan lifts her trophy after winning the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia title
- her second after winning it in 2014. - AZHAR MAHFOF / The Star
KUALA LUMPUR: Feng Shanshan has come a full circle.

The 27-year-old has ended her two-year title drought at the scene of her last triumph – the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia at the TPC Kuala Lumpur.
Shanshan overcame an early blip before romping home to a three-stroke victory over Norway’s Suzann Pettersen to become the first multiple champion in the tournament’s history.
Shanshan had stormed into the lead with a seven-under 64 in a rain-interrupted third round that forced her and several others to wait until Sunday morning to finish up.
Taking a two-stroke lead into the final round, she bogeyed the opening hole before bouncing back with birdies on the third, fifth, 11th, 14th and 15th to finish on 17-under 267.
“It feels great. My record here is really good, especially the past four years – second in 2013, first in 2014, second last year and now first again,” said Shanshan, who walked away with US$270,000 (RM1.13mil).
“I won’t compare any of my wins, but I would say this one is really important for me because my last win on the LPGA (Tour) was actually two years ago right here.
“Although I’ve been winning on the (Ladies) European Tour and in China (LPGA Tour), I really want to be on the LPGA (Tour).”
“I think I’ve had a fantastic week coming back here. Makes me feel like I’m at home.
“I really love this golf course. And actually, can we have like 10 LPGA events here on this course?”
Shanshan had finished in the top five in her four previous tournaments leading up to this event.
Seasoned campaigner Pettersen shot a successive 66 to finish on 14-under 270.
The runner-up spot is her best result this season, having finished third at the Portland Classic in Oregon, in July.
Yet, she was peeved.
“I’ve been playing really good all week. I’ve had some stupid mistakes, probably like everyone else and gave away a lot of shots,” said Pettersen, who boasts 15 LPGA Tour wins.
“I felt like yesterday I gave away a great chance of winning this.”
Anna Nordqvist of Sweden and South Korea’s Amy Yang ended up tied for third at 12-under 272.
World No. 1 Lydia Ko could only manage a 71 to finish joint 12th on eight-under 276 with six others, including last year’s champion Jessica Korda of the United States.
After a third-round 65, Lydia continued to charge up the leaderboard by making three birdies in her first nine.
But she couldn’t keep the momentum going as she double bogeyed the 15th and bogeyed the final hole to finish at eight-under 276 with a closing even-par 71.
Lydia, 19, hasn’t won since the Marathon Classic in July.

-thestar online.

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