Park Hyun-kyung outlasted So-young Lee in a playoff on the final day of the Korean Ladies Professional Golf Association (KLPGA) Tour’s SK Networks-Seogyeong Ladies Classic ($800,000) at Finks Golf Club (Par 72) in Seogwipo, Jeju Island, South Korea, on Monday.
Park and Lee finished the final round with identical 8-under-par 280s, forcing a playoff on the 18th hole (par-4).
In the second overtime, Park reached the green in two and holed out with two putts to beat So-young Lee, who could not make a bogey putt.
It was Park’s first win of the season and her fourth career victory in 910 days since winning the Chris F&C KLPGA Championship in May 2021.
Park, who had finished as runner-up nine times in her career after winning her first three titles, was visibly emotional and teary-eyed.
Park, who broke down in tears during her victory interview, said, “Being runner-up nine times made me wonder if I’m a player who doesn’t take chances,” adding, “I’ve been feeling good lately, so it’s a result of my mindset.”
Park also thanked her fans, including her fan club ‘Cutiepool’, who traveled to the tournament to support her, saying, “I was able to gain strength thanks to their support. I imagined winning the tournament many times with fans and spectators watching, and I’m glad I did.”
‘Cutieful’ is Park’s nickname, which combines the English words ‘cutie’ and ‘beautiful’.
Notably, Park avenged her overtime loss to Lee So-young at the Daewoo Women’s MBN Women’s Open in August last year.
Park also avenged her runner-up finish at the tournament last year.
Park took home $144 million for her victory and moved up to fifth on the money list ($838.67 million).
Park, who started the day in a share of the lead, battled with Lee So-young until the final round.
Back-to-back birdies on the eighth and ninth holes gave Lee a one-stroke lead, but Park birdied the 10th to regain the lead.
The pair birdied the 14th (par-3) side-by-side to move two strokes clear of the third group.
Park birdied the 16th (par-5) to take a one-stroke lead, but Lee birdied the 17th (par-3) to regain the lead.
The tie was not broken until the final 18th hole (par-4), where the two went into a playoff. Park shaved three strokes off her score in the fourth round, while Lee shot a 4-under 68.
After playing the first overtime round at par, the second ended in disaster when Lee sent her tee shot into a bunker and then her second shot into the pond in front of the green.
Hwang Jung-mi, who made four birdies without a bogey, is in third place (5-under 283).
Lim Jin-hee, Bang Shin-sil, Sung Yoo-jin, Lee Chae-eun, and Bae So-hyun finished tied for fourth (4-under par 284).
Lee Chae-eun, who entered the tournament at No. 60 on the money list, the seeding cutoff for next season, moved up to No. 58 on the money list and nearly secured her seeding for next year.
Second-place finisher Im Jin-hee finished tied for 34th (3-over par 291), closing the gap on Lee, who was unable to add to her points total.
Lee retained the top spot on the money list, grand prize, and stroke average.
Last year’s champion, So Mi Lee, fell short of expectations with a tie for 62nd (10-over par 298).
Lee will attempt to win back-to-back titles next month at the S-Oil Championship, which begins on April 2. 토토사이트