Hye In Yeom runs away with Xi­a­men In­ter­na­tional Ladies Open

Ladies GOLF - - News - Fi­nal scores: http://ladieseu­ro­pean­tour.com/leader­board/

South Korean Hye In Yeom fired a four un­der par 68 in the fi­nal round of the Xi­a­men In­ter­na­tional Ladies Open in China to earn a com­mand­ing five shot win over Thai­land’s Kusuma Meechai and the 2014 cham­pion Ssu-Chia Cheng of Chi­nese Taipei.

The 23-year-old from In­cheon recorded her first pro­fes­sional ti­tle with a four round to­tal of 272, 16 un­der par at Ori­ent (Xi­a­men) Golf and Coun­try Club.

The fifth year pro­fes­sional, who this year grad­u­ated to the Korean LPGA from the se­condary Dream Tour, is a mem­ber of the China LPGA Tour and as this was a co-sanc­tioned event, she will now be el­i­gi­ble to join the Ladies Euro­pean Tour (LET). Hye In be­gan the fi­nal round tied for the lead with Kusuma but af­ter nine holes she was three strokes clear of the field which gave her a com­fort­able ad­van­tage for the re­main­der of the af­ter­noon. She recorded her only bogey on the sec­ond hole, where she three putted from the edge of the green. How­ever a birdie on the sixth set­tled her nerves and she then moved three clear with a sec­ond birdie on the long ninth as her clos­est chal­lengers strug­gled in the warm breeze.

A stun­ning burst of three straight birdies from the 12th saw Hye In move six strokes clear of the field af­ter 14 holes and she closed with four steady pars to seal her first tro­phy and a cheque for 45,000 euros.

“I feel like I’m still dream­ing be­cause I didn’t ex­pect to win,” Hye In said, through trans­la­tion. “I didn’t see the scoreboard so I just fo­cused on my own game shot by shot and I didn’t know I’d won un­til the last hole. This will give me a lot of con­fi­dence in my golf ca­reer.”

Hye In, whose hobby is driv­ing her car along the beach and en­joy­ing beau­ti­ful sun­sets, rel­ishes play­ing on Chi­nese golf cour­ses and she recorded her pre­vi­ous ca­reer best fin­ish in the 2014 China Ladies Open, which was co-sanc­tioned by the China and Korean LPGA Tours.

She be­came the sev­enth first time win­ner on the Ladies Euro­pean Tour in 2015 and the fourth in a row fol­low­ing Han­nah Burke, Ni­cole Broch Larsen and Ce­line Herbin.

The next best play­ers, Ssu-Chia Cheng and Kusuma Meechai, carded rounds of 68 and 73 re­spec­tively to end on 11 un­der par.

LET rookie Ssu-Chia, who won the tour­na­ment by three strokes as a 17-year-old am­a­teur in 2014, said: “I’m pretty happy with the per­for­mance to­day even as a run­ner-up. It’s my best re­sult of the year. I feel very com­fort­able play­ing this golf course and the peo­ple here and ev­ery­thing, I ab­so­lutely love it. We all speak the same lan­guage and the food is pretty sim­i­lar so I’m re­ally happy to play here.”

China’s home hope Jing Yan en­dured the big­gest dis­ap­point­ment of the day. Just one shot be­hind Hye In be­fore she ran up a dou­ble bogey seven on the par-5 ninth, the 19-year-old from Shanghai fought back into con­tention only to be dis­qual­i­fied for sign­ing for a wrong score. She would have tied for fourth place, but signed for a three in­stead of a four on the 14th hole.

That meant that the Ladies Euro­pean Tour’s lead­ing rookie Nanna Ko­er­stz Mad­sen from Den­mark, Tzu-Chi Lin from Chi­nese Taipei and halfway leader Gwla­dys No­cera, who holed a birdie putt of around 18 feet on the last, shared fourth place on nine un­der par.

South African Ash­leigh Si­mon (66), Thai­land’s Non­taya Sri­sawang (68) and Beth Allen (71) tied for sev­enth place on eight un­der, with four play­ers in­clud­ing Den­mark’s Ni­cole Broch Larsen (69) and Eng­land’s Liz Young (71) tied for 10th place on seven un­der par.

“Each morn­ing when I open my eyes I say to my­self : I, not events , have the power to make me hapy or un­hapy to­day . Ican chose which it shal be . Yes­ter­day is dead , to­morow hasn ’t arived yet . I have just one day , to­day , and I’m go­ing to be hapy in it . ”

~ Grou­cho Marx

Left: Olivia Cowan

Top: Kusuma Meechai

Above: Hye In Yeom

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