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Karrie Webb coasts to six shot victory

Overnight leader Webb carded a final-round 72 to reach 10-under-par and fend off Taiwan 's Yun-Jye Wei, who shot 74.

Spain 's Paula Marti (69) and Finland 's Minea Blomqvist (69) shared third place at two under. America 's Brittany Lincicombe was one shot further back with South Korea 's Ji Yai Shin (fifth).

Australia 's Katherine Hull of Queensland fired a course record seven-under-par 65 in the final round, with six birdies on her back nine for an inward total of 30. South Africa 's Ashleigh Simon, 17, was the leading amateur and finished joint 20 th .

Webb, 32, who won five tournaments in 2006, lifted the Patricia Bridges Bowl for the third time having previously won the title in 1999 and 2000 at Yarra Yarra Golf Club. She earned a first prize of $75,000 Australian, (£30,000 or €50,000).

"It's a great start to the year," said Webb after landing her 45 th tournament win in a 13-year professional career. "It was a bit of a struggle today. I didn't feel as though I had as much control over my swing as yesterday but I managed to keep it under control."

Webb, who owns seven Major Championships, including the 2006 Kraft Nabisco Championship, last won the Mizuno Classic in November. She rocketed to World no.3 at the end of last year after two quiet years and hopes to regain her status as World no.1 in the forthcoming season. Winning her first tournament of 2007 indicates that she is on track to do so.

She has been working on the mental side of golf as well as the physical and even when her ball striking isn't 100 percent, she believes she can grind out a score, which she believes is the reason for her return to form last year.

She explained: “There are one or two weeks of the year if you're lucky where you hit it absolutely perfectly. You don't get many weeks where you feel totally in control but for the other 23 weeks, if you're able to get the ball in the hole, that's what gives you a better chance of becoming number one in the world. That's what I did last time (in 1999 and 2000).

“I think I'm a better player than seven or eight years ago. It's hard for people to understand that but the standard has got better. I'm definitely physically better and mentally.” 

Webb added that only during Saturday's third round was her swing up to her own lofty standards but that her short game was magnificent throughout the tournament.

“They were very fast and firms greens,” she said. “I do take a lot from this week.”

Webb led by one after her second round and began the final round four shots ahead of Wei, her only real title challenger in the final round.

Wei, who is ranked 39 th in the World and who has won three tournaments on the Japanese tour, challenged Webb on the front nine but fell away on the back nine. 

She was three adrift at the turn, having recorded two birdies at the second and seventh holes, but was four-over-par on the back nine. Webb birdied the long 13 th coming home but then dropped two shots at the 14 th and 17 th holes. It was all over for Wei after she double bogeyed the 15 th hole.

All eyes will turn to Webb next week as she contends for the ANZ Ladies Masters title at Royal Pines on the Gold Coast. The last time she won both Australian titles was in 2000, which turned out to be the best year of her career.

278 Karrie Webb 67 71 68 72

284 Yun Jye Wei (Tpe) 68 71 71 74

286 Paula Marti (Spa) 74 69 74 69, Minea Blomqvist (Fin) 71 72 74 69

287 Brittany Lincicome (USA) 70 73 75 69, Ji Yai Shin (Kor) 72 73 73 69

288 Bettina Hauert (Ger) 70 75 73 70, Sun Ju Ahn (Kor) 70 72 74 72

289 Katherine Hull 72 75 77 65

290 Hee Young Park (Kor) 69 77 71 73, Virginie Lagoutte-Clement (Fra) 74 70 72 74, Marta Prieto (Spa) 75 69 72 74

291 Eun Hee Ji (Kor) 74 77 70 70, Louise Stahle (Swe) 70 75 75 71, Ya-Ni Tseng (Tpe) 75 69 75 72, Nadina Light 72 73 73 73

292 Lindsey Wright 70 73 78 71, Becky Brewerton (Wal) 71 77 72 72, Sarah Kemp 66 78 71 77

293 Ayako Uehara (Jpn) 71 75 77 70, Da-Ye Na (Kor) 73 71 78 71, Karen-Margrethe Juul (Den) 76 67 77 73, Amy Yang (Kor) 69 73 77 74, Ashleigh Simon (Am) (SA) 69 74 75 75

294 Michelle Ellis 75 72 76 71, Kristie Smith (Am) 75 70 77 72, Ran Hong (Kor) 76 76 70 72, Sophie Sandolo (Ita) 73 72 75 74

295 Sophie Giquel (Fra) 79 72 71 73, Tamie Durdin 74 72 75 74, Linda Wessberg (Swe) 71 73 75 76

296 Maria Hjorth (Swe) 74 76 75 71, Rebecca Stevenson 74 71 74 77

297 Joanne Mills 78 72 76 71, Loraine Lambert 74 77 74 72

298 Sarah-Jane Kenyon 72 76 80 70, Kirsty S Taylor (Eng) 73 76 73 76

299 Ana B Sanchez (Spa) 79 68 80 72, Carlie Butler 74 76 73 76, Rachel Hetherington 75 72 74 78

300 Na Yeon Choi (Kor) 76 72 80 72, Nikki Campbell 67 73 82 78, So Hee Kim (Kor) 73 75 74 78

301 Emma Bennett (Am) 77 73 77 74, Leah Hart 76 75 75 75, Federica Piovano (Ita) 73 73 79 76, Laura Davies (Eng) 73 77 74 77

302 Alison Whitaker (Am) 73 78 78 73, Hae-Jung Kim (Kor) 75 76 77 74, Georgina Simpson (Eng) 75 77 76 74, Eleanor Pilgrim (Wal) 71 77 74 80, Natalie Gulbis (USA) 74 75 72 81

303 Ji Na Lim (Kor) 76 75 77 75, Karen Lunn 78 73 72 80

304 Sarah Oh (Am) 75 76 77 76, Lora Fairclough (Eng) 73 79 76 76, Heidi McCulkin 75 77 74 78, Diana Luna (Ita) 75 73 76 80, Kristie Newton 73 78 73 80

305 Bree Arthur (Am) 71 76 86 72, Cecilia Ekelundh (Swe) 73 79 79 74

306 Riikka Hakkarainen (Fin) 77 75 79 75, Danielle Masters (Eng) 70 82 79 75, Kate Combes (Am) 73 73 84 76, Rebecca Coakley (Irl) 73 77 80 76, Nathalie David-Mila (Fra) 73 79 78 76, Anna Tybring (Swe) 73 76 80 77

307 Elin Ohlsson (Swe) 76 76 81 74, Martina Eberl (Ger) 70 80 82 75, Stephanie Arricau (Fra) 72 80 76 79

308 Anna Rawson 75 77 81 75, Natascha Fink (Aut) 78 72 80 78

310 Sarah Nicholson (Nzl) 73 79 81 77, Young Tan Jo (Kor) 71 77 83 79

312 Crystal Fanning 74 77 79 82, Kathryn Imrie (SCO) 76 76 78 82

313 Ludivine Kreutz (Fra) 77 75 81 80




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