Taiwan’s Yani Tseng held off a resilient Katherine Hull of Australia to win the Ricoh Women’s British Open Championship at Royal Birkdale by a single stroke.
Tseng carried a four shot advantage over Hull into the final round and she maintained that lead at the turn. But, when the Taiwanese player bogeyed the 10th and Hull birdied the 11th and 13th, the gap was reduced to just one.
Down the stretch, both players failed to make the most of the birdie chances offered by the three par 5s – 15th, 17th and 18th. Hull had a putt to tie Tseng at the 17th but it narrowly missed.
On the final hole, Tseng’s drive found a fairway bunker from where she could only blast out some 40 yards. Hull went for the green in two, firing in an excellent approach that ran just through the putting surface.
Tseng failed to find the green with her third and it looked as though Hull would close the gap. But, the Australian fluffed her chip from the back of the green and it came up 20 feet short. Tseng putted up and left herself a six-foot putt for par. When Hull missed her birdie effort, Tseng had a putt to win the title. She checked the line – it was dead straight – she made a confident stroke and rolled the ball home.
It’s Tseng’s third Major title and, at just 21-years-old, she becomes the youngest ever three-time Major champion.
“It feels very special for me to win the British Open because it was a very difficult course,” said Tseng. “I think it’s going to be huge in Taiwan, and I’m really looking forward to going back to share this trophy with them, and I hope — I think lots of people were watching.”
Hull fired an excellent closing 70 to finish clear in second place. After the round she was able to remain positive despite the disappointment of coming so close to victory.
“I was really happy with my ball-striking all week,” she said. “Everything was pretty solid, I’ve just got to do more practice on my short game – it’s a confidence thing.”
Two Korean players, Na Yeon Choi and In-Kyung Kim were tied for third. The first British player was Becky Brewerton of Wales who was tied for 21st.