Ariya Jutanugarn ends stellar LPGA season with $1 million CME bonus

Lexi Thompson without a victory in 2018 capped her round with three straight birdies at Tiburon Golf Club

Lexi Thompson without a victory in 2018 capped her round with three straight birdies at Tiburon Golf Club More

Ariya, 22, began the week having already clinched LPGA Player of the Year and season prize money crowns after three victories this year. She had a 2-foot par putt on the 72nd hole - one that could have meant a tournament win, the world No 1 ranking and player of the year honours - but pushed it right and wound up losing to Jutanugarn by a shot.

Minjee Lee will need a final-round miracle in the CME Group Tour Championship to snatch a lucrative LPGA payday. "I'm very proud of myself".

A victory would extend Thompson's streak to six straight LPGA seasons with at least one win. "I was doing so great all day, and then all of a sudden it was just like small explosions in my putting stroke", she added. Jutanugarn reclaimed the advantage with four birdies in a six-hole stretch midway through her round, and the trophy was just about locked up when she birdied the par-5 14th nearly simultaneously to Henderson making bogey on the par-3 16th. She won three times in 2018.

Further gains at the 15th and 16th extended Thompson's cushion and took her to 16 under, while Korda mixed eight birdies with three bogeys to ensure she will be in the final group on Sunday.

"It means so much to me because after 2016 I never expected anything", Jutanugarn said.

Among other notables, Brittany Lincicome (67) tied for third at 13 under with So Yeon Ryu (68), Lydia Ko went 68-68 on the weekend to finish 12-under alongside Jutanugarn, Marina Alex (69) and Carlota Ciganda (70). So this year is mainly just work on that. That will change next season, when 60 players will qualify for the finale and the victor will also claim the Globe. "Wish I would've made a few more, but definitely not complaining with the five-under round and the finish I had".

"I did a pretty good job", Ariya said after a round that featured five birdies but was marred by a double-bogey six at the 11th. The year begins with the inaugural Tournament of Champions in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, from January 17-20.

Altre Notizie