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Newz Forum: GOLF: Sorenstam rallies to win Samsung World Championship

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posted on Oct, 17 2004 @ 07:50 PM
PALM DESERT, Calif. -- Annika Sorenstam charged from three shots back over the final five holes Sunday to overtake Grace Park and win her fourth Samsung World Championship.

Sorenstam, the LPGA's six-time player of the year and winner of six of her 15 Tour events this year, shot a closing 5-under 67 to finish 18 under, three shots ahead of Park.

Park, the leader the first three days, had a final-round 73.

Playing in the twosome ahead of Park, Sorenstam took sole possession of the lead for the first time in the tournament on the 71st hole, when she sank a 6-foot birdie putt on No. 17.

She chipped in a 40-footer from the fringe for an eagle 3 on the par-5, 538-yard No. 15 to catch Park at 17 under. When the ball dropped into the cup, Sorenstam leaped straight up, her arms high over her head, then bounded over to tap knuckles with caddy Terry McNamara.

Despite gusting winds, she had a 4-under 32 on the final nine holes.

The chip-in was the turning point for Sorenstam on the way to her 54th career LPGA victory.

Park, who had been smiling most of the week because she was playing well and in the lead, was grim-faced as she watched her three-stroke lead disappear over the final five holes.

She finished with two bogeys to wind up at 273.

Lorena Ochoa shot a 70 to finish third at 13 under, and defending champion Sophie Gustafson was another two shots back in fourth after a 71.

Cristie Kerr, who like Sorenstam began the day three shots behind Park, struggled to a 75 that dropped her into fifth at 278. Juli Inkster, a three-time winner of the event, had a closing 73 to finish tied for sixth with Jeon Jang (72) at 9 under.

Park, who won the Kraft Nabisco earlier this year for her first major title, lost for just the second time in the six events she's led going into the final round.

Sorenstam had drawn into a tie for the lead when she birdied No. 7, but Park came back to birdie the same hole and regain the lead. She reached 18 under with a birdie at No. 12, but bogeyed the next hole.

The $206,000 winner's prize put Sorenstam over the $2 million mark for the fourth consecutive year. No other LPGA player has ever earned as much as $2 million in a year.


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