Taiwan’s Yani Tseng picked up the check for 300,000 US Dollars, for her third LPGA Tour victory of the year, after outplaying Michelle Wie on the final day of the P&G NW Championship at Arkansas’ Pinnacle Country Club.
Tseng’s front nine was unspectacular, consisting of six pars, two birdies and a bogey on the par-five sixth. Wie was top of the pile after two rounds, three clear of Tseng in second, but could manage only a 69 in her last round compared to the Tseng’s six-under 65. But what followed was worthy of the title as she wracked up five more birdies on the back nine, moving to 13 under for the championship and pipping Wie by a stroke. Wie failed to pick up a stroke on her outward nine, with one birdie and one bogey, followed by picking up three shots on the way in, though a second bogey on 16 hauled her back again.
Tseng birdied four of five holes early on the back nine, then held on for a one-stroke victory over Wie with a birdie on No. 18. Tseng finished at 13-under 200.
Mika Miyazato of Japan came in third after shooting a best-of-the-day 64 to finish 10 under and South Korea’s Inbee Park was fourth, two strokes back after a 65.
The victory is Tseng’s first non-major of the year, following her wins at the Kraft Nabisco Championship in April and the RICOH Women’s British Open in August.
With the Arkansas championship under her belt, Tseng’s prize money this year has reached US$1.42 million, which puts her second among the LPGA players after Jiyai Shin of South Korea, who has taken in US$1.46 million.
It also puts Tseng at the top of the world rankings, nudging out Japan’s Ai Miyazato and pushing Christine Kerr of the U.S. to third place.
Amy Hung, another Taiwanese player at the championship, tied with two others at 20 with 210 strokes, while compatriot Candie Kung finished with 216 strokes.