China's Liu wins maiden title at CTBC Ladies Classic

BY :Xinhua

UPDATED :April 2, 2019


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GUANGZHOU, March 30 (Xinhua) -- China's Liu Yiyi survived a marathon finish to capture the CTBC Ladies Classic on Saturday by three strokes for her maiden crown.

The 18-year-old closed with her third consecutive round of 69 over the Dragon Lake Golf Club course in sunny conditions to finish on nine-under 207.

"It's my first pro win, which is always the most important. I feel very excited now and nearly cried for this," Liu said.

Defending champion Chen Yu-ju of Chinese Taipei, who was tied for the lead with Liu through 36 holes at six-under, could only muster an even par 72 in the final round to tie for equal runner-up with Na Hee-won of South Korea.

Chinese rookie pro Du Mohan tied for equal fourth with Chinese Taipei's Peng Chieh at four strokes back.

Liu, who won the China sectional qualifier to get into the Women's US Open last year, carded three birdies and a bogey to build up a lead she would never relinquish. On the back nine, she picked up another stroke at the 165-yard 13th hole to seal the win.

She called the 13th hole where she made a 30-foot putt for birdie the turning point.

"Since then I really played with a level head. I hadn't watched the leaderboard through the whole round. But since I played from the final group I knew I must win by one or two shots on the final green," Liu said.

"Before my five-foot birdie putt on the last hole I asked my caddie if I did triumph. She told me that I did. So I putted the way I wanted and I missed. But it didn't matter, I am a champion now," she added.

Chen was leading the tournament going into the final hole of the second round but a three-putt bogey at the last dropped her to co-lead with Liu. A bad start to the final round followed as she made two bogeys over the first four holes and failed to make a challenge. The Kaohsiung native closed with a round that featured three bogeys and three birdies, including one at the 362-yard last.

"It is not so bad. It's my fault. I did what I needed to do in the final round and I played stress-free golf in the final group. I just made too many mistakes. I hit three fat shots with an iron, which is not so good," the 21-year-old said.

Source: Xinhua
Editor: Dong Han