Golf: Thai Jutanugarn sisters fire another 59 to claim LPGA team event

Thai sisters Ariya (left) and Moriya Jutanugarn and their mother Narumon posing with their trophies after winning the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational in Midland, Michigan on July 17, 2021.
Thai sisters Ariya (left) and Moriya Jutanugarn and their mother Narumon posing with their trophies after winning the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational in Midland, Michigan on July 17, 2021. PHOTO: EPA-EFE

(REUTERS) - Sisters Ariya and Moriya Jutanugarn shot an 11-under 59 on Saturday (July 17) to rally and win the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational, an LPGA Tour team event at Midland Country Club in Midland, Michigan.

The Thai sisters started the day tied for fourth two strokes back but defeated runners-up Cydney Clanton and Thailand's Jasmine Suwannapura by three strokes in the better-ball format. Clanton and Jasmine shot a final-round 64.

The Jutanugarns alternated birdies with pars on the front nine before exploding for four consecutive birdies on holes 10-13, finishing with 11 birdies for the round. The sisters finished their round with consecutive birdies for a clean card.

"Just before we went to the tee, I walked to my sister and told her, 'You know what, Mo, today the goal is to try to make birdie on every hole. I don't care if we both make bogey. If we make bogey, after that we try to make birdie again. That's the goal today,' I told her. And we agreed to have the same goal," Ariya said.

It was the second 59 in three days for the duo.

Clanton and Jasmine were the co-leaders after 54 holes.

"Jasmine and I just talked on the 18th green, man, we felt like we won this one," Clanton said. "It was tough conditions today, it was windy. We didn't think anybody would go super low, but Ariya and Moriya played great today, so they deserved it."

South Korean Kim A-lim and American Yealimi Noh finished tied for third with Thailand's Pajaree Anannarukarn and India's Aditi Ashok, co-leaders heading into the final round. The Kim-Yealimi tandem shot 64 while Pajaree-Ashok shot 66.

The pairs finished five shots back.

The team of Clanton-Jasmine opened with three pars before a bogey on No. 4 dropped them to 14 under. They would recover to finish with seven birdies.

Clanton herself had three bogeys on the day.

This is the second win for Ariya in her last eight starts but Moriya's first since April 2018 (1,182 days).