Inbee Park loses out in Lotte Championship playoff

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Michelle Wie unable to contend in her hometown

World Number Two Inbee Park had to settle for second as Sei Young Kim claimed a dramatic playoff win, chipping in for eagle on the first playoff hole to win in Hawaii.

 

Kim, the overnight leader, looked to have blown her chance of victory after finding water with her tee shot at the 18th, with her South Korean compatriot Park setting up a birdie putt to claim the title.

 

But Park missed her short putt, allowing Kim to produce a moment of brilliance and chip in from the side of the green to force a playoff with both players level at 11-under.

 

“Obviously able to chip in and hole out from there, she’s a good player,” Park said. “She’s already won twice this year and she has definitely proven herself that she can compete out here.

 

“She’s a great player; I think she’s a great fighter.”

 

After overcoming a fear of bees to take the Founder Cup earlier in the season, the rookie produced the shot of the tournament, a 160 yard eagle.

 

Park was unable to match her compatriot and had to settle for a runner-up place.

 

Speaking through her translator, Kim said: “I don’t know what happened today.

 

“There was 140 meters, so I think about between 7 or 8.  And so I chose 8 normal, and it was good choice.”

 

“Today I didn’t see it coming,” Kim admitted. “I don’t know what I’ve done again to deserve this, but I feel like every time I win a tournament I have to do something crazy or overcome some type of obstacles. I don’t know why it keeps happening, but it feels good.”

 

“On the 18th when I hit my hybrid I thought there was no way that it would fall into the hazard.  

 

“I thought it would come short.  

 

“When it happened I just tried to get myself under control because something crazy just happened to me.”

 

“I thought maybe something crazy will happen again, so I tried to get myself under control and calm myself, and look what happened.“

 

Elsewhere former US Open winner, Michelle Wie, was unable to challenge despite home -field advantage.

 

“I had so much fun this week,” Wie said. “My game is really starting to feel good.  It was just fun this week. 

So I am going to just get that momentum going for the next couple of weeks and the rest of the season.” 

Full leaderboard details can be found here.

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