Ochoa Tops Annika Creamer in Singapore


LPGA Tour _newSINGAPORE -- Lorena Ochoa completed a runaway victory in her first tournament of the year, closing with a 4-under 68 to leave Annika Sorenstam 11 strokes behind Sunday in the rain-slowed HSBC Womens Champions.
Competing for the first time since winning the ADT Championship in November for her eighth 2006 victory, Ochoa finished at 20-under 268 on Tanah Merahs Garden Course. The top-ranked Mexican star earned $300,000 for her 18th career LPGA Tour victory.
Sorenstam won the B-flight, shooting a 71 in the rainy afternoon conditions for her third straight top-four finish. Slowed by neck and back injuries last year, she won the season-opening SBS Open in Hawaii for her 70th LPGA Tour title and first since September 2006, then finished fourth last week in the Fields Open.
Paula Creamer, the Fields Open winner, shot a 73 to finish third at 7 under. Laura Diaz (71) was another stroke back in the first-year tournament, and Karrie Webb (74) and Stacy Prammanasudh (71) followed at 5 under
In an event where only 13 players finished under par, Ochoa opened with rounds of 66, 65 and 69 to take an eight-stroke lead over Sorenstam and Creamer into the final round. Ochoa missed a chance to break Cindy Mackeys 72-hole record for margin of victory of 14, but topped her own mark of 10 in the 2006 Tournament of Champions.
Rain delayed play three times Sunday, the first for nearly an hour just after Ochoa, Creamer and Sorenstam began play in the final group. It then took them about two hours to finish the par-3 11th and par-4 12th, with play stopped for about an hour after they teed off on 11 and for 20 minutes after their drives on 12.
After the first delay, Ochoa birdied the par-3 third and par-5 fourth to reach 18 under. She also birdied the par-5 ninth and ended a string of six pars with a birdie on the par-4 16 that got her to 20 under.
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