Tseng conquers Carnoustie
Yani Tseng showed why she is the dominant force in women’s golf at the Ricoh Women’s British Open on Sunday.
World No.1 Yani Tseng showed why she is the dominant force in women’s golf by earning a four stroke victory at the Ricoh Women’s British Open at Carnoustie.
Tseng, 22, from Chinese Taipei, became the youngest player in history, male or female, to win five major championships. Tiger Woods was 24 when he won the fifth of his 14 majors at the 2000 PGA Championship.
Tseng trailed by two shots going into the final round but put together a three under par round of 69 to end 16 under, ahead of American Brittany Lang.
Tseng collected six birdies and three bogeys on a cold and windy final day at Carnoustie, which was hosting the championship for the first time.
With her win, she made it four victories from eight appearances in majors over the past two years and she also became only the third woman to successfully defend the title that she won 12 months previously at Royal Birkdale.
“It feels really good. I played so consistently today and I enjoyed the crowd here,” said Tseng, who earned a first prize of £239,047, or €272,365. “It’s so great making history on this golf course and I feel wonderful right now. It’s my honour to win the British Open again.”
Tseng sang songs to keep calm when she won at Birkdale, but this time she said that she pulled her shoulders back and stuck her chest out to keep positive.
“I think I feel much more comfortable this year rather than last year and I have been learning from my mistakes. I feel like this year, my mental is getting more mature and I think I’ve got a great attitude,” she said.
Lang fired a 67 to finish second, while a huge roar went up around the 18th green as Swede Sophie Gustafson made a final-hole birdie for a 68 and outright third place.
Korean Amy Yang ended 10 under in fourth, while Scotland’s Catriona Matthew, the 2009 champion, was 11 under but double bogeyed the 18th to fall back to nine under par in a share of fifth with the third round leader Caroline Masson of Germany.
Matthew said: “I missed a couple on 14 and 17 and then obviously a disappointing finish, but Yani has played well. I hit a good shot into 16 but missed the putt and 17 is a good eagle chance, but you just never know. The crowds have been fantastic. It was nice to play in Scotland because you don’t get the chance too often.”
Masson struggled on the greens and carded six bogeys and a double, but closed with two birdies for a 78, 10 strokes worse than her score the previous day. However, with her winnings of €71,546.79, Masson moved to second on the Henderson Money List behind the Evian Masters champion, Ai Miyazato.
Tseng said that Masson would learn from her experience: “She will learn from her mistakes and every great player goes through that. It’s not a big deal. You try your best and I’ve lost lots of times too.”
Other Europeans who finished inside the top 20 and earned Solheim Cup points were Anna Nordqvist in equal seventh place, Dewi-Claire Schreefel, who tied for 11th and Maria Hjorth, who finished in 13th place. The top four on the points’ list remained Laura Davies, Melissa Reid, Christel Boeljon and Suzann Pettersen.
Tseng wore a pink shirt for the final round, paired with white shorts and a white pullover, despite the chilly conditions, and she explained that it had become a tradition: “I tell my friends to wear pink on Sunday to support me and I think people will put it on Facebook.”
Tseng bogeyed the first, but quickly found her rhythm and birdied the third and sixth holes, going out in 35 with a two stroke lead.
She birdied 11 and then dropped shots at the 12th and 13th, but picked up another shot at the reachable 467-yard 14th, which she had eagled the previous two days.
Closing in style with birdies on the 17th and 18th holes, she returned in 34 having birdied all three of the par fives. She said: “It feels really good and I hope to keep winning. Next year there are another four majors and I will try and organise and keep working hard.”
Scores were generally low and American Katie Futcher tied the Ladies European Tour’s record for a nine-hole total with her back nine score of 29 strokes.
The next Ricoh Women’s British Open will be held at Royal Liverpool in 2012.
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