Kim holds off Shibuno for Lotte Championship win

Hyo Joo Kim shot 71 in her final round to secure a fifth tournament win on the LPGA tour; Japan’s Hinako Shibuno finished two shots behind

Last Updated: 17/04/22 8:14am

    Hyo Joo Kim's one-under-par final round proved enough to secure her fifth LPGA title

    Hyo Joo Kim’s one-under-par final round proved enough to secure her fifth LPGA title

    A final-round one-under-par 71 was good enough for Hyo Joo Kim to take a a two-shot victory over Hinako Shibuno at the Lotte Championship in Ewa Beach, Hawaii, on Saturday.

    The 26-year-old South Korean, who held three-shot leads after the second and third rounds, recovered from a bogey on No. 17 with a birdie on the final hole to finish at 11-under 277 and win for the fifth time on the LPGA Tour.

    The win was worth $300,000. Her most recent victory was at the 2021 HSBC Women’s World Championship in Singapore.

    “There were a lot of expectations but also a lot of support coming from friends and family as well,” said Kim, who won a major at age 19 in the 2014 Evian Championship.

    “There have been ups and downs and I think I am at the up part right now and I feel very proud, a little confident about the future and the outlook looks bright for me and I feel like I can do better moving forward.”

    Shibuno, of Japan, who was tied for second entering the day after firing a 68 on Friday, had no bogeys but only two birdies Saturday to finish at nine-under.

    Alone in third at seven-under was South Korea’s Hye-Jin Choi, who shot 69, her best round of the tournament.

    Hinako Shibuno secured a second-place finish in Hawaii

    Hinako Shibuno secured a second-place finish in Hawaii

    American Brianna Do, who was the other player tied for second as the day began, crumbled to join six golfers tied for 12th after a 77. Her round had no birdies, and four of her five bogeys came on a five-hole span bridging the front and back nine.

    South Africa’s Ashleigh Buhai shot her second consecutive 70 to end the tournament in fourth place at six-under, one stroke better than South Korea’s Somi Lee, who fell to five under with a 73.

    Defending champion Lydia Ko of New Zealand closed out the tournament with a one-under 70 to finish tied with seven others for 18th place.

    Watch extended highlights from the final round of the LPGA Tour’s Lotte Championship on Sunday at 9am and 11.30am on Sky Sports Golf.

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