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Golf: Pan Yanhong powers her way to Beijing victory

Former powerlifter Pan Yanhong won the China LPGA’s latest leg in Beijing. Photo: CLPGA.

Former powerlifter Pan Yanhong won the China LPGA’s latest leg in Beijing. Photo: CLPGA.

June 6, 2015: In-form Pan Yanhong captured her second victory of the year on Saturday when the former powerlifter closed with a 67 to win the Beijing Challenge by three strokes in the Chinese capital.

 

The Hebei native, who will be making her US Women’s Open debut next month, closed with a round that included five birdies over the front nine of Beijing Orient Pearl Golf Club and an eagle-three at the 14th when her ball landed within two feet of the pin after a blast of her five-iron from 193 yards out.

 

With heavy rain starting late in her round, she closed with two bogeys for a score of 11-under 205 and picked up a sixth career win on the China LPGA Tour, worth RMB75,000.

 

“I felt pressure and uncomfortable going into the final round because I injured my feet in practice, but I played a great front nine and had a huge lead at the turn,” Pan said.

 

“It began raining at the 15th, but I watched the leaderboard and knew I had a great lead. I didn’t want the event to be suspended as it would be a long day. We were in a race to finish. I made a bogey at the last hole, which is a little bit disappointing, but I won. That’s most important.”

 

Pan, 32, has won twice on this year's China LPGA Tour.

Pan, 32, has won twice on this year’s China LPGA Tour.

The 32-year-old Pan confirmed that she would be playing in next week’s CTBC Shanghai Ladies Classic, a co-sponsored event with the Taiwan LPGA Tour.

 

“Last year I won twice and this year I have won two times. I’m not setting any goals for wins. If I play well, any event, three wins, four wins, five wins, is achievable.”

 

Kang Hyeon-seo, the overnight co-leader, was runner-up. The South Korean did not record her first birdie until the ninth hole and failed to mount a challenge to Pan on her way to a bogey-free 70.

 

“I’ve already had five runner-ups. I feel very disappointed that I left this golf course without the trophy in hand,” she said. “I tried my best but the putts didn’t sink. A little consolation is that I made an 18-foot par putt at the last hole, which gave me runner-up alone.”

 

Beijing native Shi Yuting (69) was third at four shots back, while Thailand’s Tanaporn Kongkiatkrai (68) was fourth, a shot further back.

 

Shi, the 17-year-old rookie pro, finished third or equal third for the third tournament in a row after mounting a strong finish in the wet conditions.

 

“I was happy with three birdies over the final five holes,” said the teenager. “But the last hole I had a three-footer for birdie but I missed because it rained. I was in a rush. I didn’t want to finish third; always I want to win. The breakthrough win will be next week in Shanghai.”

 

Chinese teenagers Du Mohan (70) and Sui Xiang (72) tied for the top amateur honour at three-under.

 

Beijing Challenge (China LPGA), Beijing Orient Pearl Golf Club, Beijing, China

205 – Pan Yanhong 70-68-67

208 – Kang Hyeon-seo (KOR) 71-67-70

209 – Shi Yuting 71-69-69

210 – Tanaporn Kongkiatkrai (THA) 71-71-68

211 – Zhang Na 67-72-72, Pennapa Pulsawath (THA) 67-73-71, Wannasiri Sirisampant (THA) 70-71-70, Wu Sha 74-67-70

213 – Guo Caizhu 70-69-74, Yan Panpan 67-75-71, Narisara Kerdrit (THA) 74-69-70, Janya Morrakotpan (THA) 73-68-72, Sui Xiang* 70-71-72, Du Mohan* 72-71-70

215 – Tian Hong 69-71-75, Yu Ying 69-73-73, Chen Liqing 72-71-72, Piyathida Ployumsri (THA) 71-73-71, Choi Yeon-mi (KOR) 72-71-72, Pannarat Thanapolboonyaras (THA) 74-71-70

216 – Michelle Koh (MAL) 77-68-71, Ye Liying 77-67-72, Supamas Sangchan (THA) 74-71-71

Note: Players mainland Chinese unless stated; * denotes amateur

 

Source: China LPGA (www.clpga.org); Editing by SportAsia

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