Ko defends title in 2nd Swinging Skirts win
No. 1 ranked Lydia Ko defeated runner up Morgan Pressel from the U.S. yesterday in a second playoff hole, in the Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic, presented by CTBC Bank ( ) in Lake Merced, San Francisco. Ko, who turned 18 during the competition, has won the event two years in a row.
In a event packed with 19 of the world’s top 20 ranked women golfers, Ko of New Zealand notched her seventh LPGA Tour title, and fifth since the start of the 2014 season. She came from behind to even up with Morgan Pressel at eight-under par 280, before winning in a playoff round
Rounding out the top five were Brooke Henderson of Canada who shot seven-under 281, South Korea’s Kwak Min-seo (six-under 282) and Feng Shanshan of China (283, and sponsored by CTBC Bank).
Among the five Taiwanese golfers advancing in rank, Hsu Weiling ( ), who was sponsored by CTBC Bank, shot a five-under par 293 to finish 45th overall.
CTBC has sought to expand the possibilities for Taiwanese golfers by providing support for the island’s golfers to enter competitions abroad. CTBC has sponsored six Taiwanese athletes to attend events in the United States, which has allowed local golfers Hsu Weiling and Hsieh Yu-ling ( ) to both advance in the rankings.
Taiwan’s highest ranked player Hsu struggled with the weather and was disappointed with her performance. She said that the opportunities for birdies were few and far between and that shots on the green were difficult. She hoped that after some recovery time she would gradually adapt and continue to gain glory for Taiwan.
CTBC Vice Chairman Thomas KS Chen ( ) said that he was happy to see improvements among its sponsored players, year by year. He added that by co-sponsoring the event, and supporting Taiwanese athletes, the bank was working to connect local players to the global stage in golf, making more Taiwan more visible to the world.
The Swinging Skirts Golf Team is a private Taiwanese non-profit organization promoting women’s golf worldwide by sponsoring top golf tournaments and top performers. The Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic, a US$2 million event, showcases the island’s best local talent with some of the world’s top players.
Lydia Ko of New Zealand, center, accepts a check yesterday from officials of CTBC Bank after winning the Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic in Lake Merced, San Francisco. Ko won the US$ 2 million event, her seventh LPGA Tour title and fifth since the start of 2014.