China’s Feng Shanshan eagled the par-5 18th hole after her second shot approach hit the pin for a 68 yesterady and a one-stroke victory in the smog-affected Reignwood Classic, the LPGA’s first tournament in Beijing.
American Stacy Lewis birdied four of her first six holes to quickly catch overnight leader Feng and led for most of the final round by one stroke before the Chinese golfer thrilled the local gallery with her late eagle after Lewis had putted out with a par.
It was Feng’s second career victory — she won last year’s Wegmans LPGA Championship, a tour major. She has had an outstanding year, making 14 cuts in 15 tournaments with six other top 10 finishes and earning US$800,000.
Feng finished with a 26-under total of 266 on the par-73 Pine Valley Golf Club. Lewis also shot a final-round 68.
No. 1-ranked Inbee Park of South Korea finished third, also after a 68 yesterday, five strokes behind Feng.
Taiwan’s Yani Tseng finished sixth after a storming round of 66 yesterday. Compatriot Candie Kung finished tied for 63rd after finishing the final round two over.
Despite her first win being a major, Feng said yesterday’s win in Beijing was as important.
“I would say I’m as happy as when I won last year,” she said. “It was our first time in Beijing, the tournament sponsor is also my sponsor. So I really wanted to do well to make them look good. I also broke my lowest score for four rounds, and gave it my best.”
For most of the tournament, the players could not escape the capital’s notorious pollution and there was another smog delay of nearly three hours before the final round started yesterday, with a number of players donning surgical masks.
Additional reporting by staff writer