Anna Nordqvist prevails in playoff at rain-shortened Evian Championship

Gladys Abbott
September 18, 2017

Nordqvist leaves Evian-Les-Bains in France with her first major championship in eight years, and the Arizona State University graduate will end 2017 with high spirits for what next year could bring.

Nordqvist beat Altomare with a bogey on the first playoff hole, the par-four 18th, to claim her second career major title.

Today's playoff, also featuring American Brittany Altomare, was played in driving rain as the Thursday weather that forced the year's final major to be cut to 54 holes came full circle.

Lydia Ko had been tied for the lead before her final hole bogey.

At that point, Ko was at six-under, four shots back of leader Moriya Jutanugarn, but she slowly gained back that ground.

Moriya, the older sister of fellow LPGA competitor Ariya Jutanugarn, failed to record a birdie over her back nine and was let down by two bogeys over that stretch, the only top-nine finisher to post a positive Day 3 score.

As rain began to spit and the winds continued to escalate, Ko managed to navigate safely through her next two holes, overcoming a less than ideal approach shot on 17 to smartly two-putt from distance.

She steeled herself during the second round.

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"When that happens, I mean, I still do make the occasional double, but it's just not as bad as it used to be".

Kirk reached the lead when she birdied the 14th and 15th but then bogeyed the 16th and 17th and although she found a way to birdie the 18th it was by then a case of too little too late. I wanted to play for Annika and I really wanted to make that team.

"The distance was 25 meters, so I was deciding whether I'm going to do chipping or putting, and I think after I made the shot, I was surprised, as well", Park said after her round. Two holes later, play was stopped.

Needing to get up and down, Ko's putter deserted her at the wrong moment, leaving the 20-year-old to complete a two-under 69, and missing out on the playoff.

Nordqvist is the 10th different major victor in the last two seasons.

"When Ariya won the British Open at Woburn past year, I finished not long before her and dashed out to watch her play the last few holes", recalled the big sister.

"But I reckon if I keep knocking on the door, one day it will be my turn", she said.

South Korean contenders' charge fell short at the LPGA Tour's final major championship of the season here on Sunday. "I had a good week in Portland. and I felt like I could now start getting some good finishes".

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