Nordqvist reigns in the rain after dramatic Evian Championship play-off

Nordqvist reigns in the rain after dramatic Evian Championship play-off

Nordqvist reigns in the rain after dramatic Evian Championship play-off

Kiwi Ko surged into contention to win her third major title, only to miss out on a play-off when she missed a mid-length putt for par on the 18th hole at Evian-Les-Bains in France.

The year's fifth and final major was reduced to 54 holes after bad weather forced the abandonment of play on Thursday, with all scores from day one discarded.

On the course in the afternoon, first-round leader Sung Hyun Park, the U.S. Women's Open champion, dropped shots at the first and third holes, then birdied the par-5 seventh to trail Jutanugarn by two.

Second-round leader Moriya Jutanugarn of Thailand and two-time major victor Lydia Ko of New Zealand fell out of the playoff by dropping shots on the 18th.

A birdie at 14 immediately offset her prior bogey, before Ko suddenly reversed her previous par five performance. The two finalists shot a 204.

In 40km/h winds and rain that caused puddles within 15 minutes of the heavens opening, Nordqvist won her second career major with a scrambled bogey as the long par-four 18 effectively became a par five.

A nine-time victor on the LPGA tour, the Japanese star never claimed a major title.

Jutanugarn, whose younger sister Ariya is already major champion, is one shot clear of Japan's Ayako Uehara, who soared with a 66. A stunning chip-in on the 15th, flopping a shot from the rough and running it into the cup, launched her back into the picture. After trading in a bogey with a birdie on the front nine, Park went bogey-birdie-double bogey-bogey-bogey over her first five holes on the back nine to fall to two-under for the championship.

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Two holes behind, Jutanugarn was struggling at the 13 hole.

She closed out her final round with a bogey at the par-four 18th for a 73, and finished at four-under 209, good for a three-way tie in 10th place.

Inevitably a question about the comparisons between her and Ariya came up during her post round press conference. While the 23-year-old Thai was making bogey-6 at the 13th, Nordqvist made an eagle-3 and birdie to be alone on 10 under.

In her final round as a professional before retiring, two-time Evian victor Ai Miyazato shot 73 to finish 1 over.

Jutanugarn, attempting to win her first tournament, started the final round leading by one.

"I think playing and having a good finish last week gave me good momentum coming into this week". "I thought it was just for second", said Altomare.

"I just felt like I wanted to go out there today and focus on what I could do", Nordqvist said, LPGA.com reported.

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