Busan (South Korea) (AFP)
The tournament in the port city of Busan is the third Asian event of the US LPGA season this year, after stops in Singapore and Thailand in the spring.
Ko took the win to cash the winner’s check for US $ 300,000 in a sudden death playoff, beating South Korean Lim Hee-jeong who led the tournament.
It was the fourth time the 26-year-old has come from behind in the final round to win her career on the Tour.
“It was my first playoff in my professional career, so my heart was racing,” Ko said in a television interview after his victory.
“I’m a little sorry for Hee-jeong but I think I ended up getting lucky,” she added.
Ko hit a 64 without a bogey to complete the rule at 22 under 266, stretching the tournament into the playoffs.
In the sudden death playoffs that started in the 18th, she landed an outstanding hybrid shot and sank a short birdie putt to secure the victory.
“I knew Hee-jeong is a solid player and I thought I could secure second place if I played my best,” Ko said, adding, “So I was pretty relaxed. “
“I did my best but I think it’s an incredible win,” Ko said.
Lim, who didn’t bug out on 73 holes for four days, failed to secure the final victory.
With her latest victory, Ko returned to the top of the table from American Nelly Korda, who has not played in Busan.
Ko became world number one in 2019 and held the leaderboard for the entire 2020 season – a streak of 100 straight weeks – but ceded the top spot to Korda in June this year.
Sunday’s win also marked the 200th LPGA victory for a South Korean, with Pak Se-ri, Park In-bee and Kim Sei-young among the golfers contributing to the feat.
After Busan, the LPGA has two more tournaments, with the season-ending CME Group Tour championship in Florida in November.
© 2021 AFP