Teenage sensation Lydia Ko clinches her seventh LPGA Tour win just two days after her 18th birthday


Teenage sensation Lydia Ko clinched her seventh LPGA Tour win just two days after her 18th birthday.

She triumphed at the Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic at Lake Merced on Sunday to strengthen her position as world number one.

The New Zealander didn’t have it all her own way however, and had to birdie the 18th to force a play-off with American Morgan Pressel.

Both players then missed birdie putts on the first play-off hole before Ko rolled one in from five foot to clinch the title at the next hole.

It was Ko’s second win of 2015 after victory at the ISPS Handa Woman’s Australian Open in February.

“I just tried to go with my game plan. I knew that whoever was going to win in the playoff was going to make a birdie,” Ko said. “You know, there is not that many places where you’re going to get a chance for a bogey or something. We’re both hitting the ball good, so I knew that at the end it was somebody that was going to make a good putt and come off with a birdie.”

Pressel, who came so close to her first LPGA win since October 2008, admitted she felt the pressure when putting in the play-off.

“They were all chances to win the tournament; certainly the first two,” she said. “I just tried to put good strokes on it. First one I was disappointed to leave short. You don’t want to leave a chance to win the tournament short. The second putt I really thought that I hit a good putt, and then it was a complete misread on the third one.”

Ko has now won five of her last 25 starts and leads all three of the LPGA’s major categories ­– the money list, the Rolex Player of the Year and the Race to CME Globe.