Samsung World Championship
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Pak wins as Webb self-destructs

Se Ri Pak rallied from a four-stroke deficit to win the Samsung World Championship of Women's Golf as Karrie Webb double-bogeyed two of the last four holes today.

Pak closed with a par round of 72 for an 8-under 280 total, one stroke better than Webb who had a 2-over 74 in the final round at Rush Creek Golf Club.

Webb, who started the final round with a one-stroke lead over Pak and Laura Davies, nearly rebounded from her first disaster, the double bogey at 15, but she missed a 6-foot birdie putt on the next hole as Pak was bogeying No. 17.

In her bid to become the first player since Beth Daniel in 1990 to win seven tournaments in a year, Webb self-destructed on the final hole.

Her third shot on the 530-yard par-5 found a greenside bunker. She hit out about 3 feet short of the green.

After chipping onto the green, she barely missed a 6-foot bogey putt.

"Obviously I'm a little bitter right now," Webb said. "But there's not too many times I'm going to be in that situation to make double to lose. That's something I never expected, but I tried my hardest on every one of those seven shots."

Pak, the leader after the first two rounds, played 18 in par and then waited at the scorer's tent, talking with friends instead of watching Webb fall apart.

"I just don't want to (watch)," Pak said. "I just want to get ready for a playoff."

Rachel Hetherington placed third with a closing 74 for 283. Davies had a 4-over 76 and Rosie Jones a 71 and tied for fourth, another stroke back.

Pak won $150,000, while Webb earned $90,000.

Webb said despite her lead, she was nervous because of the wind and the greens that were soaked from an overnight rainstorm.

"There were too many holes out there," she said. "You can have a big swing at any moment -- easily birdie or bogey any given hole with the same club in your hand."

Hetherington started the day two shotes behind Webb and was just one behind after the front nine.

Pak has won three times this year and finished in the top 10 eight times. She was the Rolex Rookie of the Year in 1998 and started slowly this year before moving up the ranks, beginning with her win at the ShopRite LPGA Classic in June.

"I feel like I did everything already. Now I'm No. 1 in the world," Pak said.

Pak struggled in the early going. She made a bogey on No. 1 when she hit her second shot into a greenside bunker, chipped to 5 feet, then watched as her putt came to a rest teetering over the edge of the cup.

"I thought that break was from right to left," Pak said. "That's why I missed the first putt."

Pak got back on track on No. 6 with a birdie. She was even par on the next four holes, birdied No. 11 and was even for five holes before the bogey on No. 17.

Hetherington was just one stroke behind Webb after the front nine, but Hetherington's run at the title came to a premature end on No. 12.

Hetherington hit her tee shot on No. 12 about a foot from the water, then just grazed the top of the ball with her next shot. The ball barely moved, so Hetherington called for a ruling, which was to take a penalty stroke. She finished the 172-yard, par-3 with a triple bogey and dropped to fourth, five strokes behind Webb.

Two-time defending champion Juli Inkster shot a 73 and finished at 290.

 

 


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