Golf: Anna Nordqvist holds off strong field to win LPGA Founders Cup

Anna Nordqvist of Sweden holds a Tiffany necklace representing her first win of the 2017 LPGA season after she won the Bank Of Hope Founders Cup at Wildfire Golf Club on March 19, 2017.
Anna Nordqvist of Sweden holds a Tiffany necklace representing her first win of the 2017 LPGA season after she won the Bank Of Hope Founders Cup at Wildfire Golf Club on March 19, 2017.PHOTO: AFP

PHOENIX (AFP) - Anna Nordqvist closed with a four-under 68 at the LPGA Tour's Founders Cup on Sunday to hold off a trio of former Major champions and earn her first victory of 2017.

She totalled 25-under 263, two shots better than Thailand's Ariya Jutanugarn (68), South Korean Chun In Gee (66) and Stacy Lewis (68) of the US.

This is the first win for the 29-year-old Swede since the debacle at last July's US Women's Open where she was assessed a two-stroke penalty in the playoff which allowed Brittany Lang to the claim the title.

Nordqvist's score to par came within two strokes of the LPGA record of 27 under set in 2001 by fellow Swede Annika Sorenstam and matched last year by Kim Sei Young. All three rounds took place in Phoenix.

Former US Women's Open winner Chun, reigning Women's British Open champion Ariya and 2011 ANA Inspiration winner Lewis all tried but failed to catch Nordqvist.

Chun rolled in six birdies in her bogey-free final round.

Nordqvist's 25-foot birdie putt at No. 17 made for a ceremonial walk down the 18th fairway that even a bogey could not spoil.

World No. 1 Lydia Ko of New Zealand shot 68 and finished 20-under in a bogey-free tournament.

Michelle Wie, in contention the first two days, shot final rounds of 72 and 70 and finished tied for 35th after she bogeyed her final two holes on Sunday.