JA­PAN WINS The Queens pre­sented by Kowa

Ladies GOLF - - News -

In NAGOYA, JA­PAN – Sun­day De­cem­ber, 6th 2015, hosts Ja­pan led from start to fin­ish to earn an his­toric home vic­tory at The Queens pre­sented by Kowa, an in­no­va­tive new match play tour­na­ment be­tween four of the world’s lead­ing women’s golf tours: the Ladies Euro­pean Tour (LET), Aus­tralian Ladies Pro­fes­sional Golf As­so­ci­a­tion (ALPG), Korean Ladies Pro­fes­sional Golf As­so­ci­a­tion (KLPGA) and LPGA of Ja­pan (JLPGA).

Af­ter go­ing into the fi­nal round at Miyoshi Coun­try Club with an eight point lead over Korea, the Ja­panese team ended with 41 points, just three ahead of the Kore­ans, who won eight of their nine sin­gles matches. The LET team fin­ished third with the ALPG in fourth.

“I’m re­lieved and de­lighted at the same time. We worked su­perbly as a team, and our team spirit was def­i­nitely the key in the de­ci­sive mo­ments,” said the elated Ja­panese cap­tain, Momoko Ueda. “It turned out to be a tight con­test in the end, but the play­ers’ per­for­mances were su­perb through­out. It was a spe­cial ex­pe­ri­ence and an hon­our to play along­side such won­der­ful play­ers and I’m sure that this vic­tory will mean a lot to ev­ery­one play­ing on the JLPGA Tour.”

The Ja­panese team won six and halved one of their nine sin­gles matches, earn­ing 19 points in bit­terly cold con­di­tions on Sun­day and Misuzu Narita led the way in the top match with a 6&5 win over Ca­tri­ona Matthew. Korea earned 14 points in the sin­gles, start­ing in the sec­ond match when Jin Young Ko beat Whit­ney Hil­lier on the last hole but the out­come re­mained in the bal­ance for much of the day.

In the third match, Dame Laura Davies, the LET team cap­tain, beat Aus­tralian Sarah Kemp by 2&1 in a thrilling match that went to the 17th. Laura was four up be­fore Sarah ea­gled the long 15th to keep the match alive and the cap­tain also lost the short 16th af­ter her tee shot took a hard bounce left into a small val­ley.

“I ac­tu­ally played re­ally well tee to green but didn’t make many putts,” said Dame Laura. “Kempy didn’t have her best day on the greens; she missed a lot of greens, but it was one of those matches where it was tough to fin­ish her off.”

Karine Icher added a half point for the LET in the 15th match against Ja­pan’s Erina Hara, earn­ing the LET team four points from the sin­gles. Karine was one-up com­ing down 18 be­fore Erina hit her ap­proach shot stone dead.

“It was a good match and we both played well,” said Karien, whose birdie at­tempt from 20 me­tres hit the hole on the last green. “On the 18th I hoped for a mir­a­cle but we halved the match, it was tight all the way through.

“The Ja­panese and Kore­ans have some very good play­ers, so they are hard to beat. We are the only team where we have to com­bine na­tion­al­i­ties, so it’s hard to fight that team spirit. It’s a good ex­pe­ri­ence, good tour­na­ment and crowd. I hope we con­tinue for the next few years.”

Sarah-Jane Smith fi­nally got a full point on the board for Australia with a 5&4 vic­tory over Emily Kris­tine Ped­er­sen be­fore her cap­tain Rachel Hether­ing­ton se­cured another win for Australia with a 2&1 win over Mar­i­anne Skarp­nord giv­ing the ALPG six points on the last day.

Rachel com­mented: “I’d like to say how proud I am of our team. It was a fierce com­pe­ti­tion and we didn’t have as many points as we’d have liked, but we had a great ex­pe­ri­ence and were thrilled to be a part of the event, so I’m very proud of all the girls.”

For Laura, it was a tough out­come but the in­au­gu­ral match was a great col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween golf’s global tours. She said: “Our team is very dis­ap­pointed be­cause we needed to be a lit­tle bit closer to have a chance to­day but the Ja­panese and Korean teams played so well. The whole team has en­joyed it and the LET as a tour is re­ally happy to be play­ing in The Queens pre­sented by Kowa. We’ve re­ally en­joyed it and I hope it’s the first of many. Con­grat­u­la­tions to Ja­pan be­cause they played very well.”

For de­tailed scor­ing visit: http://www.mbs.jp/the­queens2015/ score/

Ped­er­sen and Burke

Team Ja­pan

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.