Michelle reaches final four
MEXICO CITY: The Lorena Ochoa Match Play tournament is down to the final four and American Michelle Wie is one of the survivors.
Michelle won two matches on Saturday at Club de Golf Mexico in Mexico City and advanced to the semi-finals of the LPGA Tour’s first match-play event since 2012.
Joining Michelle in the semifinals are Ariya Jutanugarn of Thailand and South Koreans Kim Sei-young and Hur Mi-jung.
Ariya, ranked No 3 in the world, edged Cristie Kerr with a par on the 19th hole in their afternoon match; Mi-jung posted a 1-up win over Shanshan Feng of China and Sei-young rolled to a 5-and-4 victory over Karine Icher of France.
Michelle hasn’t won since the 2014 US Women’s Open but has put herself in position to end the drought after prevailing in a tight quarter-final matchup in Saturday’s competition.
In an afternoon match, Michelle prevailed against fellow American Angel Yin, closing out the tight battle with a birdie on the 20th hole. Michelle came from behind twice against the 19year-old Angel, an LPGA Tour rookie who at one point was 4up.
“I think it was the definition of survival out there,” Michelle said. “She played so good.”
Michelle’s next opponent in the semi-finals will be Ariya.
Ariya got past the 39-year-old Cristie, who lost last week in Texas in a six-hole playoff, after letting a three-hole lead slip away before recovering.
“The greens here are really hard to read, the speed, everything,” Ariya said. “Cristie hit some really good putts, but they just didn’t go in.”
Feng missed a birdie putt on the 18th hole that could have closed out her match against Mijung. Instead, Mi-jung won on the first extra hole and now faces Seiyoung.
“Before today, we talked a little bit,” Sei-young said of a possible matchup with Mi-jung. “If you win today, you might play with me tomorrow, so ‘see you tomorrow,’ she said. It came true.”
In the morning round, Mi-jung knocked out top-ranked Lydia Ko with a 1-up victory and prevailed by the same result in the afternoon against Feng. Reuters