Lydia Ko bags 4th title of the year in playoff

World number one Lydia Ko bounced back from the disappointment of last week’s Women’s U.S. Open final round fade out in the best possible style by defeating Mirim Lee and Ariya Jutanugarn to pick up her fourth win of the season at the Marathon Classic in Ohio.

The trio tied at 4-under par 270 after 72 holes and battled it out down the 18th hole four more times before Ko finally broke the deadlock with a birdie putt from 8-feet.

Lydia Ko Lydia Ko (Credit: Callaway Golf)

“It’s always good to come back to a place where you’ve well played,” said Ko, who won her 14th LPGA title and also won this event two years ago.

“The fans have been super supportive every year I come here, and Judd and the sponsors were nice enough to give me a sponsor’s invite when I was an amateur.”

“To be able to win this tournament again in two years is I think going to make it a little bit more special.”

Jutanugarn had a golden opportunity to win the title – which would have also been her 4th of the year – on the second playoff hole but missed from six feet for birdie, before Ko did the same on their third attempt to extend the playoff by another hole.

Korean Hyo Joo Kim had her chances to win in the final round but stumbled to a two over 73 to finish alone in fourth place a shot out of the playoff. American Stacy Lewis took out fifth place a shot further back at 11-under.

Queenslander Katherine Kirk had one of her best results in recent times, tying for 21st place at 5-under par, while Sarah Jane Smith tied for 53rd at two-over.

The second UL International Crown teams event will take place this week with 32 players representing 8 countries competing for the title at Chicago’s Merit Club.

Australia is seeded 4th and will field its strongest team, headed by Minjee Lee, Karrie Webb, Rebecca Artis and Smith. Spain are the defending champions from the inaugural event in 2015.