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Kajitani overcomes chaos to win Augusta National Women’s Am

AUGUSTA, Ga. (AP) — Japanese teenager Tsubasa Kajitani overcame a double bogey on the seventeenth gap by closing with an outstanding par save, getting her right into a playoff that she received on the primary further gap Saturday to seize the Augusta National Women’s Amateur.

In a becoming conclusion to a ultimate spherical crammed with extra blunders than birdies, she received with a par when Emilia Migliaccio’s delicate chip on the 18th gap within the playoff did not clear the sand.

Kajitani thought she had misplaced the event, similar to so many different gamers on a chaotic again 9, when she took 4 pictures from the entrance of the seventeenth inexperienced for a double bogey.

She wasn’t alone in her errors, nevertheless, and when she used the slope to perfection on the 18th gap for a pitch that grazed the sting of the cup, she had an even-par 72. Migliaccio closed with a 70 and already was in at 1-over 217, with no thought she would have extra holes to play on the residence of the Masters.

In the playoff on the 18th, Migliaccio was proper of the bunker close to the inexperienced, leaving her a fragile shot over sand to a quick inexperienced. She left it within the bunker, and Kajitani received with superbly judged tempo from the again of the inexperienced that left her 4 toes away for the successful par.

The 17-year-old was in tears when it was over, saying solely to an interpreter, “I can’t describe it.”

This was nothing like the primary version of a event already elite in stature due to the place it is performed. Two years in the past, Jennifer Kupcho and Maria Fassi staged a dynamic duel alongside the again 9, and Kupcho delivered a cost so acquainted at Augusta National with an eagle and three birdies over the ultimate six holes.

The ultimate hour of the second version featured a triple bogey that price U.S. Women’s Amateur champion Rose Zhang, a double bogey for Olivia Mehaffey of Northern Ireland on No. 12, consecutive three-putts that stalled Ingrid Lindblad and bogeys on the ultimate gap that saved the playoff from being much more crowded.

It was nonetheless compelling as a result of it is Augusta National, filled with greater than eight many years of prices and collapses, often with none warning.

Zhang suffered as a lot as anybody. The No. 1 participant within the ladies’s beginner world rating, the 17-year-old Californian was main at 1 beneath when she hooked her tee shot on the par-5 thirteenth. She discovered golf balls in Rae’s Creek, simply none belonging to her, so it was again to the tee to hit her third shot.

Going for the inexperienced on her fourth shot, Zhang got here up quick and within the water and made triple bogey. She bounced again with a birdie on the 14th to regain a share of the lead, solely to three-putt from the again fringe of the seventeenth inexperienced.

Zhang had a 12-foot birdie putt on the ultimate gap to be part of the playoff. She missed and closed with a 75.

Lindblad, who was tied with Zhang at 1 beneath to begin the ultimate spherical, did not make a birdie till the thirteenth gap. The Swede adopted that with a poor chip on the 14th that led to bogey, a three-putt on the fifteenth for par and a three-putt for bogey on he sixteenth gap. Another birdie on the seventeenth left her one shot out of the playoff, however she missed the inexperienced on the ultimate gap. She additionally closed with a 75.

They tied for third together with Rachel Heck (72), Emma Spitz (71) and Karen Fredgaard (73), all of whom made bogey on the 18th gap that finally price them an opportunity within the playoff.

Pauline Roussin-Bouchard of France additionally completed one shot behind after a wild spherical of seven birdies and 5 bogeys.

Fredgaard, amongst 9 gamers who had no less than a share of the lead, reached 2 beneath with a birdie on the thirteenth. But she got here up properly wanting the 14th from the golf green and made bogey, went for the inexperienced on the par-5 fifteenth and got here up quick and into the water after which three-putted for a double bogey.

Only 5 gamers broke par within the ultimate spherical at Augusta National, with Maja Stark having the low rating at 69. She confronted her personal playoff at Champions Retreat on Thursday simply to get the thirtieth and ultimate spot of gamers to make the reduce. Stark wound up in a tie for tenth.

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