Australia’s Karrie Webb has held on to clinch a fifth ISPS HANDA Women’s Australian Open title with a one stroke victory at Victoria Golf Club in Melbourne.
Victoria Golf Club didn’t play so nice for the final round of the 2014 Women’s Australian Open.
Up until Sunday, some of the world’s best of women’s golf had carved apart the stunning Melbourne sandbelt layout with plenty birdies and eagles with at least ten players looking a legitimate chance of taking victory.
But in a script we’ve seen many times before, the experienced Karrie Webb prevailed and her fighting 4-under par 68 final round saw her beat Korean Chella Choi by a shot and claim her fifth Australian Open title.
The early groups had the worst of the tee times as wind and rain battered Melbourne. However, the sunnier afternoon conditions were still tricky as blustery winds made shot making difficult.
“I feel very fortunate to have won today. But I liked my chances at the start of the day because of the wind picking up. If we had another day like we had the first three days, I probably was a little too far back to have a chance, so I was thankful for the weather changing and I played as good as I have in a very long time,” Webb said.
“I was hitting some quality shots early on and I realised that I’d gotten into that mindset and so I stayed on top of myself to make sure that that’s what I did and never tried to hit a shot. I just played the shot that the conditions dictated,” Webb added.
At one stage during the closing holes, five players held a tie for the lead at 11-under par including Australian amateur Minjee Lee, Karrie Webb, Lydia Ko and overnight co-leader Korean Chella Choi.
Choi’s record breaking third round 62 was all but a distant memory as she drove out-of-bounds on the second hole caused trouble early in the round and struggled to card a 2-over 74 final round. Choi came to the final hole at Victoria Golf Club needing a birdie to force a playoff with Webb but her 8-foot putt slid past the hole to hand Webb the tournament.
Suzann Pettersen also led the event going into the final round and also found trouble on the second hole. A lost ball epitomised her day and the Norwegian limped home carding an 8-over par 80 to finish in 23rd place.
Lydia Ko finished just two strokes behind Webb but unusually she never looked comfortable on Sunday and putted her way out of the tournament with 34 putts.
American Paula Creamer’s first trip to Australia was a good one and her final round 4-under par 68 saw her share third place with Lydia Ko and France’s Karine Icher.
Australian Amateur champion Minjee Lee finished in a tie for 11th place as the leading amateur after slipping to a final round 78 in the windy conditions.
The 2014 Women’s Australian Open title was Webb’s 56th professional victory and her 40th on the LPGA Tour.