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Golf: Ryu So-yeon leaps to No. 5 with record-breaking Canadian win

Ryu So-yeon (right) is sprayed with champagne by compatriots Park In-bee (far left) and Kim In-kyung after winning her first LPGA title for two years at the Canadian Pacific Women’s Open. Photos: AFP.

Ryu So-yeon (right) is sprayed with champagne by compatriots Park In-bee (far left) and Kim In-kyung after winning her first LPGA title for two years at the Canadian Pacific Women’s Open. Photos: AFP.

August 25, 2014: Ryu So-yeon carded a composed closing 69 on Sunday to set a tournament-record 23-under-par total of 265 at the Canadian Pacific Women’s Open and record her first victory since winning the Jamie Farr Toledo Classic in August 2012.

 

Ryu – who leapt from World No. 9 to No. 5 in Monday’s rankings – finished two shots ahead of fellow Korean Choi Na-yeon (67) for a superb wire-to-wire win at London Hunt and Country Club, where the 24-year-old bettered the event’s previous sub-par record by five shots.

 

World No. 2 Park In-bee finished third at 18-under and celebrated on the green with Ryu in classic Korean style, spraying the winner with champagne with help from compatriot Kim In-kyung. Ryu had rushed the green frequently over the last two years for Park and others, but was delighted to now be the ‘drenchee’ following 27 top-10s since her last victory.

 

“I’ve been waiting so long for the champagne. I was ready to get champagne. I’ve sprayed champagne on In-bee maybe more than five times, but finally she gave it to me, so it feels great,” Ryu said, who won the US Women’s Open in 2011 and was the 2012 Rolex Rookie of the Year.

 

Ryu, 24, poses for a mock ‘selfie’ after winning her third LPGA title in four years.

Ryu, 24, poses for a mock ‘selfie’ after winning her third LPGA title in four years.

“I’ve been waiting and wanting a victory so much that I really cannot feel anything right now. It’s always good to be the champion with the trophy.”

 

The Seoul-born star, who lives in Los Angeles, led the field all week following an opening 63, but admitted she grew nervous when good friend Choi drew within one shot on the final day.

 

“Na-yeon made a birdie at 15 and I made a bogey, so it was only one-shot difference and I was really nervous. I was really scared because I didn’t want to lose my really great opportunity and I didn’t want to chase down,” said Ryu, who joined Meena Lee (2005) as the tournament’s only Korean winners.

 

“I was scared about it on the 15th hole, but I made a really great birdie at 16 and after that I was a bit relieved. It feels really great to play with really great golfers.

 

With the US$337,500 first-place cheque, Ryu moved to sixth on this year’s LPGA money list with US$1,079,263.

 

Ryu won the first of her three LPGA titles at the 2011 US Women’s Open, which earned her a full-time LPGA card from 2012, when she also won the last of her eight Korean Tour titles.

 

Source: LPGA (www.lpga.com); Editing by SportAsia

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