Japan Captures Womens World Cup

By Sports NetworkFebruary 13, 2005, 5:00 pm
2005 WomenGEORGE, South Africa -- The Japanese team combined for 3-over 149 in Sunday's final round, but it was enough to give them the win at the Women's World Cup of Golf. They finished with a three-round total of 3-under-par 289, which was good for a two-shot win.
Sunday's format was stroke-play where both players' scores counted toward the team total.
Teenage star Ai Miyazato fired a 6-under 67 on Sunday and needed that low score. Her partner Rui Kitada was awful on the back nine as she posted a 7-over 44. She finished with a 9-over 82 as the team nearly squandered a four-shot lead on the second nine.
'That front nine was probably the best nine holes I have ever played,' said Miyazato. 'We tried to help each other and I tried to concentrate on my game and that is the way it. When Rui was starting to go down, I tried to bring myself up.'
Jennifer Rosales shot a 2-under 71 and her partner Dorothy Delasin carded a 2-over 75 to give the team from the Philippines the best round on Sunday, an even-par 146.
They tied for second with Korea at 1-under-par 291. The Korean tandem of Jang Jeong (74) and Bo Bae Song (75) posted a 3-over-par 149 in Sunday's final round.
The Japanese team built a four-stroke lead after Miyazato collected her third consecutive birdie at the ninth hole. Kitada, who was 2 over on her front nine, fell apart on the back side and brought everyone back into the tournament.
Miyazato birdied the 10th to extend the margin, but Kitada triple bogeyed the 11th and bogeyed No. 12. Miyazato made her first mistake of the round with a bogey at the par-5 13th and Kitada dropped another shot at the 14th to trim the lead to two.
Kitada took care of that cushion with a double bogey at 15. She bogeyed the 16th also, the Korean team fell in front of them and the Philippines were in the clubhouse at minus-1.
Three teams were knotted in first at 1 under par, but the Japanese team finally played well on the back nine. At the difficult par-3 17th, Miyazato knocked her tee ball to 2 feet setting up birdie and Kitada had 10 feet for her two. She rolled in the putt and Miyazato tapped in her birdie try to give the team a two-shot lead with one to play.
Both managed pars at the last to give Japan the $200,000 first-place check to split.
'That putt on 17 was probably the biggest one for me in my career,' said Kitada. 'I kept missing the short ones all day. It was so difficult and so tough. Ai was playing well and I really felt like I was just pulling her leg, I really felt terrible. The putt on 17 really saved me and saved the team.'
Scotland, who shared the second-round lead with Japan, combined for a 6-over 152 on Sunday. Catriona Matthew (72) and Janice Moodie (80) finished in fourth place at even-par 292.
Karrie Webb (74) and Rachel Hetherington (77) from Australia took fifth place at 2-over-par 294.
Dawn Coe-Jones carded an even-par 73 on Sunday and teamed with fellow Canadian Lorie Kane, who shot a 77, to post a 150 in the final round. They tied for sixth with Wales' Becky Morgan (73) and Becky Brewerton (78) at plus-3.
The U.S. team of Meg Mallon and Beth Daniel dropped all the way down to 14th after a disappointing final-round 12-over 158.
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    Korda happy to finally be free of jaw pain

    By Randall MellMarch 17, 2018, 2:43 am

    PHOENIX – Jessica Korda isn’t as surprised as everyone else that she is playing so well, so quickly, upon her return from a complex and painful offseason surgery.

    She is inspired finally getting to play without recurring headaches.

    “I’d been in pain for three years,” she said after posting a 4-under-par 68 Friday to move two shots off the lead at the Bank of Hope Founders Cup.

    Korda had her upper jaw broken in three places and her low jaw broken in two places in December in a procedure that fixed the alignment of her jaw.

    Korda, 25, said the headaches caused by her overbite even affected her personality.

    “Affects your moods,” Korda said. “I think I was pretty snappy back then as well.”

    She was pretty pleased Friday to give herself a weekend chance at her sixth LPGA title, her second in her last three starts. She won the Honda LPGA Thailand three weeks ago in her first start after returning from surgery.

    “I'm much happier now,” Korda said. “Much calmer.”

    Even if she still can’t eat the things she would really like to eat. She’s still recuperating. She said the lower part of her face remains numb, and it’s painful to chew crunchy things.

    Full-field scores from the Bank of Hope Founders Cup

    “Chips are totally out of question,” Korda said.

    She can eat most things she likes, but she has to cut them into tiny pieces. She can’t wait to be able to eat a steak.

    “They broke my palate, so I can't feel anything, even heat,” Korda said. “So that's a bit difficult, because I can't feel any heat on my lip or palate. I don't know how hot things are going in until they hit my throat.”

    Korda has 27 screws in her skull holding the realignment together. She needed her family to feed her, bathe her and dress her while she recovered. The procedure changed the way she looks.

    While Korda’s ordeal and all that went into her recovery has helped fans relate to her, she said it’s the desire to move on that motivates her.

    “Because I was so drugged up, I don't remember a lot of it,” Korda said. “I try to forget a lot of it. I don't think of it like I went through a lot. I just think of it as I'm pain-free. So, yeah, people are like, `Oh, you're so brave, you overcame this and that.’ For me, I'm just going forward.”

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    Finally adapted to short putter, Martin near lead

    By Randall MellMarch 17, 2018, 1:54 am

    PHOENIX – Mo Martin loved her long putter.

    In fact, she named her “Mona.”

    For 10 years, Martin didn’t putt with anything else. She grew up with long putters, from the time she started playing when she was 5.

    While Martin won the Ricoh Women’s British Open in 2014, about nine months after giving up Mona for a short putter, she said it’s taken until today to feel totally comfortable with one.

    And that has her excited about this year.

    Well, that and having a healthy back again.

    Full-field scores from the Bank of Hope Founders Cup

    “I've had a feeling that this year was going to be a good one,” Martin said. “My game is in a special place.”

    Martin was beaming after a 6-under-par 66 Friday moved her two shots off the lead at the Bank of Hope Founders Cup.

    “Just a beautiful day,” Martin said. “I was able to play my game, make my putts.”

    Martin hit all 14 fairways in the second round, hit 15 greens in regulation and took just 27 putts. After struggling with nagging back pain last year, she’s pain free again.

    She’s happy to “just to get back to a place now where my ball striking is where it has been the last few years.”

    Martin, by the way, says Mona remains preserved in a special place, “a shrine” in her home.

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    Clanton rides hole-out eagle to lead at Founders

    By Associated PressMarch 17, 2018, 1:47 am

    PHOENIX - Cydney Clanton holed out from the fairway for eagle on the par-4 13th and closed with a birdie Friday to take the second-round lead in the Bank of Hope Founders Cup.

    Clanton shot a 5-under 67, playing the back nine at Desert Ridge in 5-under 31 to reach 9-under 135.

    Clanton's wedge on the 13th flew into the cup on the first bounce. She also birdied the par-5 11th and 15th and the par-4 18th. The 28-year-old former Auburn player is winless on the LPGA.

    Full-field scores from the Bank of Hope Founders Cup

    Ariya Jutanugarn, Marina Alex, Karine Icher and Mariajo Uribe were a stroke back on a calmer day after wind made scoring more difficult Thursday.

    Jessica Korda and Mo Martin were 7 under, and Michelle Wie topped the group at 6 under.

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    Ko's struggles continue with Founders MC

    By Randall MellMarch 17, 2018, 1:26 am

    PHOENIX – Lydia Ko loves the Bank of Hope Founders Cup and its celebration of the game’s pioneers, and that made missing the cut Friday sting a little more.

    With a 1-over-par 73 following Thursday’s 74, Ko missed the cut by four shots.

    After tying for 10th at the HSBC Women’s World Championship in her last start, Ko looked to be turning a corner in her quest to find her best form again, but she heads to next week’s Kia Classic with more work to do.

    “I just have to stay patient,” Ko said. “I just have to keep my head high.”

    It was just the fifth missed cut in Ko’s 120 career LPGA starts, but her fourth in her last 26 starts.

    Ko’s ball striking has been erratic this year, but her putting has been carrying her. She said her putting let her down Friday.

    “It seemed like I couldn’t hole a single putt,” she said. “When I missed greens, I just wasn’t getting up and down. When I got a birdie opportunity, I wasn’t able to hole it.”

    Ko came to Phoenix ranked 112th in driving distance, 121st in driving accuracy and 83rd in greens in regulation. She was sixth in putting average.

    Full-field scores from the Bank of Hope Founders Cup

    Cristie Kerr saw the struggle playing two rounds with Ko.

    “Her game’s not in good shape,” Kerr said. “She seemed a little lost.”

    Ko, 20, made those sweeping changes last year, starting 2017 with a new coach (Gary Gilchrist), a new caddie (Peter Godfrey) and new equipment (PXG). She made more changes at this year’s start, with another new coach (Ted Oh) and new caddie (Jonnie Scott).

    Ko doesn’t have to look further than Michelle Wie to see how a player’s game can totally turn around.

    “It always takes time to get used to things,” Ko said. “By the end of last year, I was playing solid. I’m hoping it won’t take as much time this year.”

    Ko had Oh fly to Asia to work with her in her two starts before the Founders Cup, with their work showing up in her play at the HSBC in Singapore. She said she would be talking to Oh again before heading to the Kia Classic next week and then the ANA Inspiration. She has won both of those events and will be looking to pull some good vibes from that.

    “This is my favorite stretch of events,” she said. “And I love the Founders Cup, how it celebrates all the generations that have walked through women’s golf. And I love the West Coast swing. Hopefully, I’ll make more putts next week.”

    Ko, whose run of 85 consecutive weeks at Rolex world No. 1 ended last summer, slipped to No. 12 this week.