Ko becomes the youngest winner on the Ladies’ European Tour

Lydia KoLydia Ko continued her remarkable form of 2012 by winning early in 2013 and becoming the youngest winner of a Ladies’ European Tour event. Ko won the ISPS Handa New Zealand Women’s Open at the weekend and is the first home winner of the event. 

Last year the 15 year-old New Zealander became the youngest winner of a professional event when she won the New South Wales Open and then became the youngest winner of a LPGA Tour event when she won the CN Canadian Open. Ko also won the US Women’s Amateur Championship and was the leading amateur at the Ricoh Women’s British Open and the US Women’s Open.

Ko finished as the leading player in the World Amateur Golf Rankings for the second consecutive year and received the McCormack Medal from Peter Dawson, the Chief Executive of The R&A, at a special ceremony at the World Amateur Team Championships in Turkey.

After leading going into yesterday’s final round in Christchurch, Ko was overtaken by Stacey Keating from Australia and Amelia Lewis from America. She rallied well however and a birdie on the 15th brought her back level with her rivals. Both Keating and Lewis three-putted the final hole to leave Ko with a three foot putt which she holed calmly to clinch an emotional one shot victory with a ten under par total of 206.

Ko told the media: “It means a lot and makes it more special to be the first New Zealander to win the Women’s Open. It is always special to make history. I guess I broke history again.”

The World Amateur Golf Ranking (WAGR) was established in 2007 when the men’s ranking was launched. The women’s ranking went live in 2011 and WAGR, which is now administered in partnership with the United States Golf Association, is recognised as the world’s pre-eminent amateur golf ranking system, with numerous event organisers using it as an entry criterion for their events.

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