World Ladies Championship: Inbee Park repels Suzann Pettersen at Mission Hills
Last Updated: 09/03/14 1:37pm
Inbee Park: World No 1 collects her trophy at Mission Hills
World No 1 Inbee Park claimed her first victory of the year as she stormed to five-shot success in the World Ladies Championship at Mission Hills in China.
The South Korean started the day tied for the lead on 18-under-par with world No 2 Suzann Pettersen after shooting a course record 62 on Saturday.
Park carried on where she left off and led all the way after the opening hole as she carded a six-under 67 on a damp and drizzly day to finish on 24-under for the tournament.
Norwegian Pettersen beat Park by one stroke to win the event last year but she had to settle for second place this time around after firing a 72 which left her back on 19 under.
The pair began with a four-shot cushion over the rest of the field and there remained three shots back to third-placed So Yeon Ryu of South Korea, who closed with a 69, at the end of the day.
Park's only moment of concern came mid-round when she bogeyed the 10th after Pettersen had birdied the ninth, cutting her three-shot lead to one, but the Korean birdied the next two holes to restore control.
Further birdies on the 15th and 18th on Mission Hills' signature par-73 Blackstone Course brought her the final winning margin.
"Today was obviously the toughest day out there because of the weather," said Park.
"Everything seems to be working quite well for me, from ball striking to putting. Everything was great today so I'm just happy to be here and win my first tournament of 2014.
"Last year I was leading going into the final round and I lost to Suzann. I knew that I left something out there last year so coming back this year I definitely wanted to win and that's what I just did.
"I had good memories from last year and better memories from this year, so I'm happy to be here. It has been a fantastic tournament."
Pettersen said: "Inbee played fantastic today under a little tougher conditions. There were a few extra elements of weather that we hadn't seen earlier but I feel like I played average, nothing better. I didn't go out and shoot six under like she did.
"There's room for improvement but it's been a good week overall. My game has become a lot better over the week and I'll be happy to come back and play this course again."
Australian Minjee Lee, the world's top amateur at the age of 17, shared fourth place with Thailand's Ariya Jutanugarn after the pair carded scores of 69 and 71 respectively.
England's Trish Johnson (72) finished in ninth place on 11 under, while compatriot Holly Clyburn (73) tied for 12th four shots further back.