Park slams door in Women’s British Open

Inbee Park of South Korea became the seventh player to complete the LPGA’s Career Grand Slam when she closed with a 7-under-par 65 to win the 39th Ricoh Women’s British Open by three strokes over rookie Jin-Young Ko, also of South Korea, at Trump Turnberry Resort in Ayrshire, Scotland.

The 27-year-old Park claimed her seventh major title and joined Louise Suggs, Mickey Wright, Pat Bradley, Juli Inkster, Karrie Webb of Australia and Annika Sorenstam of Sweden as the only players to win four LPGA Tour majors.

The LPGA is calling it a Grand Slam even though the Evian Championship has become a fifth major. Park, No. 1 in the Rolex Women’s World Golf Rankings, won the Evian in 2012, one year before that event was designated as a major.

“It’s the greatest day of my life yet for sure,” said Park, who has won six of the last 14 women’s majors, including three in 2013 and two this year. “It was a great day of golf today. I played great golf out there.

“Even though I made a couple of early mistakes, I was able to hold on really well on the back nine. Obviously I got a bit lucky today. The golfing god was on my side for sure.”

Park birdied the second and third holes before making her only bogeys on the next two, but ramped things up with four consecutive birdies through No. 10. She took charge with a 20-foot eagle putt at No. 14 and a birdie two holes later as Ko faltered on the back nine.

Ko, 20, who was playing in her first major after winning three times on the Korean LPGA Tour, seemed to be headed to her first major title by carding an eagle on the seventh hole and birdies on Nos. 8 and 10.

However, she didn’t gain another stroke on par over the last eight holes, took a bogey on the 13th and had a double bogey 6 at the 16th en route to a 71.

Second-ranked Lydia Ko of New Zealand, who has yet to win a major title, closed with a 69 and finished four shots back in a tie for third with So Yeon Ryu of South Korea, the 2011 U.S. Women’s Open champion, who had a 68.

Suzann Pettersen of Sweden, a two-time major champion, shot 72 and was five strokes back in solo fifth, while Teresa Lu of Taiwan wound up another stroke back in sixth after a 74.

Anna Nordqvist of Sweden posted a 69 and finished seven shots back in a tie for seventh with Mika Miyazato of Japan, who had a 73, while Amy Bolden of Wales carded a 71 and was one more stroke behind in a tie for ninth with Melissa Reid of England, who totaled 72, and Minjee Lee of Australia, who came in at 73.

Cristie Kerr, a two-time major champion, was the top American in a tie for 13th after a 71, while third-ranked Stacy Lewis, who also has won two majors, shot 71 and wound up in a tie for 17th that included Lexi Thompson, the ANA Inspiration champion earlier this year, who wound up at 72.

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