South Korean Choi wins in Arkansas with late charge

Reuters News
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Posted: Jun 28, 2015 10:12 PM

(Reuters) - South Korea's Choi Na-yeon used her trusty 8 iron to great effect over the closing holes of the Arkansas Championship on Sunday, finishing eagle-birdie-par to claim her second win on the LPGA Tour this season.

Choi, who won the opening event of the season in Florida, trailed local favorite Stacy Lewis by a stroke with three holes to play but leapfrogged the American by holing out from 142 yards for an eagle at the 16th.

Lewis, playing in the group ahead, missed a short downhill putt on the par 3 17th then bogeyed the final hole for a three-under 68.

Choi once again pulled out her 8 iron on the 17th and stuck it close enough for a tap-in birdie. A par at the last sealed a 15 under total for the 54-hole event, giving her a two-shot win over Japan's Mika Miyazato.

Lewis finished tied for third three shots behind.

Choi said she knew her 8 iron on 16 would be good -- just not that good.

“I thought it's going to be good, but I didn't expect like it go in,” she said.

Lydia Ko, who recently lost her world number one ranking to Park In-bee, enjoyed the best final round with a 63 to tie for sixth place.

Park, who reclaimed top spot with her win at the Women's PGA Championship earlier this month, missed the cut for the first time in more than a year.

Of the 16 Tour events played so far, 11 have been won by South Korea-born players.

(Editing by Peter Rutherford)