Jutanugarn wins US Women's Open on fourth playoff hole | AP sports

07 June, 2018, 11:16 | Author: Elena Meyer
  • Sarah Jane Smith comes out of nowhere to take big lead at U.S. Women's Open AP

Ariya Jutanugarn moved inexorably towards the U.S. Women's Open title when she opened an nearly insurmountable seven-stroke lead halfway through the final round on Sunday.

Golf got class-bully mean, Hyo-Joo Kim put on an impressive show and Jutanugarn, no stranger to trouble down the stretch of a major championship, went from invincible to vulnerable.

Jutanugarn started the third round behind Smith, but quickly gained ground on the Australian, making two birdies on her first three holes.

South Korea's Kim closed with a five-under 67 to force the playoff and had two long putts to win in the extra session but could not get them to fall.

Of the other Australians in the field Minjee Lee is at 2 over through just six holes of her second round after two bogeys on day two. But the Thai star survived long enough to defeat Hyo Joo Kim on the fourth playoff hole Sunday at the U.S. Women's Open.

Carlota Ciganda of Spain had her best finish in a major, closing with a 69 to finish alone in third, four shots out of the playoff. He missed a 3-foot birdie putt on the ninth hole, and then missed a birdie putt from 4 feet on the par-5 15th.

They again missed the green, Kim in a bunker to the right and Jutanugarn over the putting surface in another bunker.

"I feel like I want to inspire the kids", she said.

The South Korean was unable to take advantage of the par-five 17th, which was playing as the second-easiest hole, but Jutanugarn fared even worse after pulling her lay-up into the rough, missing the green with her third and then chunking her chip.

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"Actually, I wasn't keeping up with the score at the time so I didn't really know about it".

"It's really tough for me because, you know, I didn't have good finish the last two holes".

"I think I'm going to sleep pretty well", Jutanugarn said. When the second round is completed the cut will be made to the low 60 players and ties.

First round leader Ariya Juanugarn (-5) started her second 18 at 1:15 p.m. local time.

Smith, a 33-year-old from Australia, had a three-shot lead going into the weekend after back-to-back 67s, but finished the tournament with two straight disappointing rounds. I was sort of holing a lot of putts.

"I'm really exhausted. I just want to go out and be proud of myself every day". I feel comfortable on the greens which has been something that has been a little bit off laterally.

Ariya suffered an epic collapse on the back nine, blowing a seven-stroke lead after a triple-bogey at the par-four 10th.

On Monday at the CME Group Tour Championship last November, Jutanguarn told Nilsson and Marriott that it cost $350 to educate a child for an entire year at the schools she helps to fund.

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