Feng wins Volvik for first 2017 title despite late bogeys

Feng Shanshan watching her tee shot on the seventh hole in the final round of the Volvik Championship. She won by a single stroke after surviving bogeys on two of the last three holes.
Feng Shanshan watching her tee shot on the seventh hole in the final round of the Volvik Championship. She won by a single stroke after surviving bogeys on two of the last three holes.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

CHICAGO • China's Feng Shanshan survived two late bogeys to post her first LPGA victory of the season on Sunday in the Volvik Championship in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

The golfer from Guangzhou had six birdies before bogeys at the 16th and 18th holes en route to a four-under 68, good enough for a total of 19-under 269 and a one-stroke win over Australia's Minjee Lee and South Korean Park Sung Hyun.

"I was trying to win the tournament since the start today and I'm glad that I did it," said Feng, who earned US$195,000 (S$270,000) in prize money.

"I'm really happy to have this win because I've had six wins on the LPGA so far but only two in the United States."

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Feng said she got a boost from the Chinese fans in the gallery who came out to cheer her on to victory.

"So I'm really happy that I'm not only playing well in Asia but also in the US, and very glad that a lot of the Chinese came today to support me," she said.

The 27-year-old claimed her seventh LPGA title and her first since last year's Japan Classic - one of two wins she clinched last year. She is also a two-time champion of the Sime Darby tournament in Malaysia.

The 2016 Rio Olympics bronze medallist was up by four strokes with four holes to play before her late difficulties.

Lee applied pressure with her eighth birdie of the day at the 17th hole en route to a 65, and Park closed with a 66.

The Australian lost her chance at a birdie on the 18th hole when her approach shot missed the mark. She did manage to save par and preserve her bogey-free round.

"I was like, 'Oh, I'm four shots behind with two holes to go.' So I just tried to play and make as many birdies as I could on the last two holes. I made one," she said. "I'm pretty happy with my result. Obviously I'm going to come up a little bit short, but still I hit it pretty solid all week and I putted pretty well."

South Korean Lee Jeong Eun carded a final-round 67 to share fourth place on 271 with American Lizette Salas, who signed for a 69.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 30, 2017, with the headline 'Feng wins Volvik for first 2017 title despite late bogeys'. Print Edition | Subscribe