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Patty Tavatanakit, a 21-year-old rookie, holds off Lydia Ko’s historic round for ANA Inspiration victory

RANCHO MIRAGE, Calif. — Even historical past could not cease Patty Tavatanakit Sunday on the ANA Inspiration.

Lydia Ko shot one of many best remaining rounds in LPGA main championship historical past on the Dinah Shore Tournament Course at Mission Hills Country Club, however all that did was put Ko inside shouting distance of the dominant Tavatanakit.

Tavatanakit, a rising 21-year-old star from Thailand and UCLA, accomplished a wire-to-wire victory to make the main championship her first LPGA win. Starting the day with a five-shot lead, Tavatanakit did every thing she wanted to do on a heat, windless day in Rancho Mirage to carry onto the victory.

“I was playing my own game and didn’t look at the leader board at all today,” Tavatanakit mentioned.

Patty Tavatanakit holds the trophy after winning the LPGA's first major, the ANA Inspiration, at Mission Hills Country Club.

Patty Tavatanakit holds the trophy after successful the LPGA’s first main, the ANA Inspiration, at Mission Hills Country Club.

But Ko’s heroics, scorching the Shore Course for a tournament-tying single-round document 62, included a tournament-record 29 on the entrance 9 and stored the event title doubtful till late within the day. In the top, although, Ko may get no nearer to Tavatanakit than two pictures.

Tavatanakit’s 4-under 68 Sunday gave her an 18-under 270 complete, one shot shy of the occasion’s scoring document of 19-under set in 1999 by Dottie Pepper.

“I just kept hitting good shots and my putting, I rolled it well just didn’t read it well today,” Tavatanakit mentioned. “But overall I feel like I really stuck to my gameplan and I overcome the adversity out there. It was tough mentally, and there was a lot going on and I felt like I handled it pretty well.”

Ko completed at 16-under, threatening on the again 9 to shoot the second 59 in LPGA historical past till a string of six pars in her remaining seven holes.

Cruise management for remaining 18 holes

While Ko’s round made the event fascinating Sunday afternoon, the reality is Tavatanakit was in command of the event all day. That was evident from the second gap when Tavatanakit’s second shot on the par 5 trickled into the again tough, however she chipped the ball in for an eagle-3 that appeared to finish all suspense for the day by giving her a seven-shot lead for the second. a birdie on the par-3 eighth put Tavatanakit at 17-under for the event.

What Tavatanakit did not know was the Ko was scorching to a 7-under 29 on the entrance 9. That included a birdie-eagle and 4 extra birdies within the subsequent seven holes. Having began the day eight pictures again, Ko instantly three pictures again.

“I don’t think it was like there was an exact moment where I felt like, okay, this is going to be a good one,” mentioned Ko, 23 however a 15-time LPGA main winner regardless of having not received since 2018. “Especially around a course like this, you just have to focus until that last putt drops in the last hole.”

Birdies on the tenth and eleventh holes put Ko in the course of the 15-under and simply two pictures again of Tavatanakit, however Ko’s round slowed after that. Tavatanakit, alternatively, moved to 18 underneath with a one-foot birdie putt on the twelfth gap. After that, Ko and Tavatanakit mixed for only one birdie the remainder of the round, a birdie by Ko on the par-4 fifteenth.

Neither participant went for the island inexperienced in two on the par-5 18th regardless of the 485-yard tees, each laying up and two-putting for routine pars.

Overshadowed by the good golf on the high had been among the LPGA’s greatest names who floated effectively behind the lead in a tight battle for third. Eventually, Nelly Korda, Sei Young Kim, Shanshan Feng and Nanna Koerstz Madsen all tied for third at 11-under, one shot forward of Jin Young Ko, Inbee Park and Ally Ewing.

A smiling Ko mentioned she was pleased with the progress of her recreation underneath new coach Sean Foley, coming so near breaking her winless streak and crawling again from thus far behind Tavatanakit to begin the day.

“I think it just shows it doesn’t matter how far back you are, you can always go for it. As long as you have one hole in front of you, there is always a chance to make birdie or eagle.

What a Sunday finish

Lowest rounds in an LPGA major all-time

61: Hyo Joo Kim (2014 Evian Championship)

62: Minea Blomqvist (2004 AIG Women’s Open)

62: Lorena Ochoa (2006 ANA Inspiration)

62: Mirim Lee (2016 AIG Women’s Open)

62: Lydia Ko (2021 ANA Inspiration)

This is a developing story. Check back for more updates.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: ANA Inspiration: Patty Tavatanakit edges Lydia Ko for first LPGA win

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