Lydia Ko records best finish of 2017

Author
Niall Anderson,
Section
Golf,
Publish Date
Sunday, 16 April 2017, 4:19PM
(Photosport)
(Photosport)

Lydia Ko has finished strongly at the Lotte Championship on the LPGA Tour, to claim her best result in 10 months.

Ko shot a superb eight-under 64 to finish in second, after a superb final three days of the tournament.

The 19 year old world number one was in danger of missing the cut after a first round one-over 73, but followed up with rounds of 69, 65 and 64 to storm up the leaderboard, finishing at 17-under par.

It is Ko's best finish since winning the Marathon Classic last June, but carding the best round of the day wasn't enough to catch runaway leader Cristie Kerr. The American backed up her third round 62 with a final round 66 to claim a three shot victory.

Once again, it was Ko's putting which proved to be a vital factor. Having struggled with the putter earlier in the year, Ko required a mere 22 putts in the final round, being especially potent on the back nine.

After a birdie at the first, Ko stagnated early on the front nine, carding her first bogey in 44 holes on the second, before holing four straight pars.However, she caught fire at the turn, reeling off four straight birdies and adding a further four on the run home to continue her rise up the leaderboard.

"It's a big confidence booster," said Ko. "I've been playing pretty solid - didn't have the greatest week at the Kia Classic but then played pretty decent at the first major of the year. With the wins not being as high and strong compared to the other days I knew that the birdies were out there."

"Considering where I was after the first day I'm pretty pleased with where I finished at the end of the week."

The strong finish clinched Ko's fourth top ten in her seventh event of the year, and her first top five finish in 13 events as she steadily begins to find her best form.

Ko's rivals for the world number one ranking - So Yeon Ryu and Ariya Jutanugarn - finished in sixth and seventh respectively.

* Danny Lee has slid backwards at the RBC Heritage event on the PGA Tour, shooting a two-over 73 to drop 28 spots back to a share of 53rd at two-under. Jason Dufner leads the tournament at 13-under.

- NZ Herald

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