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Paraguay coast to wire to wire victory

Paraguay surprised all with their seven-stroke victory on their debut in the Women's World Cup of Golf on Sunday, making a tremendous impact for a country with only six golf courses.

Julieta Granada and Celeste Troche sealed a wire-to-wire victory with a seven under par 65 in the final betterball matches for a total of nine under par.

Their birdie, birdie finish capped a week of superb team play in which they claimed a four-stroke lead in the opening singles, retained it through a difficult round of foursomes and then marched to an emphatic victory in the betterball.

“Day one was key,” said the 20-year-old Granada . “We didn't expect a four-shot lead at only five under then, but it made a big difference because the alternate shot is such a tough format, and then everybody scores low in the betterball.”

The United States team of Juli Inkster and Pat Hurst finished second on two under with a closing 67. Korea 's Young Kim and Ji Yai Shin took third place on one under, also with a 67.

Granada and Troche did not get off to the best of starts when they both three-putted the first for a bogey.

But Granada soon found her form, making the birdies at holes three, five, six, eight and 11, while Troche birdied 10, chipped in for birdie on 17 and then holed a five-footer for birdie at the last.

“That chip-in on 17 made us realise that this wasn't just a dream but that it was actually happening,” said Troche.

As a team, the two players could not be further apart in their careers at the moment.

Granada is a rising star on the LPGA Tour and came into this event having claimed the richest first prize in women's golf when she won $1-million in the ADT Championship.

“I like winning. I'm enjoying going to the press conferences, and the cheques are nice too,” said the bubbly Granada , whose mother caddied for her this week.

“She gets a good percentage,” she said.

Troche, on the other hand, arrived in South Africa unsure of her future following a poor 2006 in which she campaigned on the Futures Tour and enjoyed a few starts on the LPGA Tour, but with little success.

“To win this is a great feeling because I have been struggling. I've been wondering what I should do with my life and whether I should continue playing golf, and this week gave me the answer,” she said.

South Africa finished a disappointing 16 th on 13 over par despite a solid 66 in the betterball. But it was a slow start in the opening singles which led to their worst finish in three years in this event.

“We tried a bit too hard on the first day. We should have just stayed steady. But we really came back on the final day,” said Laurette Maritz.

279 Paraguay (Granada/Troche) 139 75 65

286 USA(Inskter/Hurst) 149 70 67

287 South Korea (Kim/Shin) 143 77 67

289 Italy (Zorzi/Sergas) 145 73 71, Scotland (Moodie/McKay)145 76 68

291 Australia (Garrett/Wright) 148 74 69

293 Taiwan (Hung/Lin) 150 77 66

294 Wales (Brewerton/Morgan) 148 78 68

295 England (Davies/Johnson) 154 74 67

296 New Zealand (Brooky/McKinnon) 146 77 73, Finland (Hakkarainen/Kuosa) 150 72 74

297 Brazil(Hannemann/Priscila) 154 72 71

299 France (Nocera/Arricau) 157 73 69

300 Japan (Ueda/Moromizato) 155 78 67, Denmark (Juul/Tinning)149 83 68

301 Spain (Sanchez/Elosegui) 155 80 66, South Africa (Maritz/Simon) 157 78 66

308 Sweden (Alfredsson/Koch)157 81 70

313 Germany (Monke/Simon)165 73 75, Norway (Saether/Skarpnord) 160 75 78

315 Ireland (Coakley/Kavanagh) 160 80 75

339 Kenya (Naliaka/Njoroge) 169 91 79




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