October 22, 2021

Park strolls to first Kia Classic success

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Inbee Park finishes clear of American duo Amy Olson and Lexi Thompson in California to claim 21st career victory; Mel Reid tumbles out of contention with a 77; watch the ANA Inspiration live on Sky Sports Golf from Thursday

Last Updated: 29/03/21 2:15am

Inbee Park has now claimed 21 wins during her career Inbee Park has now claimed 21 wins during her career

Inbee Park has now claimed 21 wins during her career

South Korea’s Inbee Park claimed the Kia Classic title for the first time as she strolled to victory in the final round at Aviara Golf Club in Carlsbad, California.

The 32-year-old, who was securing the 21st win of her career, had previously finished second in the event in 2010 and 2016 and tied for second in 2019.

Park also had a five-shot cushion after three rounds and, after starting with six successive pars, she pulled further clear with birdies at the seventh, ninth and 10th.

Back-to-back bogeys at the 12th and 13th checked Park’s charge but there was still plenty of daylight back to her nearest pursuers, and any hopes they may have had of catching her were ended when she made an eagle-two at the par-four 16th.

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Park then finished on a slightly low note with a bogey at the 18th but her two-under 70 lifted her to 14-under 274 after 72 holes.

American duo Amy Olson and Lexi Thompson shared second place on nine under after rounds of 68 and 69 respectively.

Olson had four birdies in her flawless score, while Thompson looked to have snatched sole second place with birdies at 16 and 17 only to then bogey the last.

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South Korean Jin Young Ko claimed fourth place on eight under after closing with a 70.

England’s Mel Reid had shared second place overnight but she tumbled down into a tie for 26th place on two under following a five-over 77 which included double-bogey sixes on both the 12th and 13th.

Charley Hull was one further back in joint-33rd place on one under after carding a level-par 72, with Bronte Law (75) tied for 44th on level par.

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