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NEW JERSEY: Nelly Korda of the United States poses with the winner’s trophy after winning the Mizuho Americas Open at Liberty National Golf Club in Jersey City, New Jersey. – AFP
NEW JERSEY: Nelly Korda of the United States poses with the winner’s trophy after winning the Mizuho Americas Open at Liberty National Golf Club in Jersey City, New Jersey. – AFP

Korda wins sixth LPGA title at Liberty National

NEW YORK: World number one Nelly Korda continued her remarkable year, clinching her sixth win on the LPGA Tour with victory at the Mizuho Americas Open at Liberty National on Sunday. Korda duelled with Australian Hannah Green throughout the final round in Jersey City but Green made bogey on the final hole. Korda’s one-under round of 71 was enough for the one stroke victory. The 25-year-old American missed out on what would have been a record sixth straight title at the Founders Cup last week.

But despite a shaky front nine, where she made three bogeys and a birdie, Korda recovered with birdies on the 10th, 13th and 15th. It came down to the final hole with the leading pair level - Green found the left rough after pulling her tee shot while Korda safely found the fairway. Green’s second shot ended in the rough by the greenside bunker and she then found the green but left herself a 15-foot putt. Korda’s putt for birdie was just inches away, leaving Green to make her putt to force a playoff which the Australian was unable to do as she made bogey.

“Oh my gosh, six, I mean, I just can’t even really gather myself now after that head-to-head that Hannah and I had pretty much all day,” Korda said. “It wasn’t my best stuff out there today but fought really hard on the back nine,” she added. 

“I feel like you never have your A-game throughout an entire tournament. You kind of have to grind through it even with your B, C, and D game. I definitely felt like I had my C and D game today. Didn’t really play at that well,” she added.

“Just told myself that even though I was 2-over, I still had opportunities on the back nine to take the lead or to battle with Hannah, because she was playing solid golf,” she added. Korda becomes the first player since Park In-bee in 2013 to win six times in a single season and is the first American to do so since Beth Daniel won seven titles in 1990.

Korda matched Annika Sorenstam and Nancy Lopez for the all-time record win streak of five when she won last month’s Chevron Championship.

She started her historic victory run at January’s Drive On Championship in her hometown of Bradenton, Florida, then took a break before winning three times in as many weeks—at March’s Seri Pak and Ford championships and in April’s Match Play tournament.

Green, who won the LA Championship last month, put a brave face on the setback. “I mean, to lose to Nelly, it’s sad, but then it’s also Nelly Korda. You know, like she’s obviously so dominant right now. To feel like second behind her is quite nice,” she said.

“Unfortunately the bogey on the last has a little bit of a sour taste, but I still competed out there when I didn’t really think I was in it at all,” she added. The Thai pair of Chanettee Wannasaen and Ariya Jutanugarn both tied for third, alongside American Jennifer Kupcho and Australian Gabriela Ruffels, four strokes behind Korda. – AFP

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