South Korea has another women’s major winner – and her name his Sung Hyun Park.
Following in the footsteps of the likes of Se Ri Pak, Inbee Park and So Yeon Ryu, Park went ten-under-par over the weekend at the US Women’s Open to clinch her maiden major title – and also her first on the LPGA Tour.
The 23-year-old led the championship through 36 holes a year ago and, coming from behind on the final day at Trump National, she took the solo lead from Shanshan Feng and amateur Hye-Jin Choi on the 16th hole and held her nerve to see the championship home.
“I almost feel like I’m floating on a cloud in the sky,” said Park afterwards. “Of course, I did have many winnings in other tournaments, but winning here at the US Open means so much more and for that I am grateful and extremely happy.”
But it didn’t feel real until she saw her mother, Keum Ja Lee, in the crowd at the end.
“Up until the moment that I saw my mother, I really couldn’t feel that it was really happening,” said Park.
“She stood right in front of me and said, I am so proud of you, Sung Hyun. At the moment it really dawned onto me, I guess I really won the championship.”
It was disappointment for 2012 Women’s PGA Championship winner Feng who struggled to a three-over-par 75 in the final round to finish T5. However, she was pleased with her performance.
“I’m happy about my result because coming into this week I had no expectations at all,” she said. “My last three US Opens, I think I missed two cuts and last year I just made the cut [T38] so actually this year is such an improvement.”
Eight of the top 10 finishers were from South Korea, including 2011 champion Ryu. Amy Yang, who was tied for second starting the day and has been a fixture in the U.S. Women’s Open with five top fives in the past seven years, faded to T8.