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‘It really is surreal’ – Australia’s Green wins shock first LPGA major

Hannah Green had never on an LPGA event before landing her first major

KPMG Women’s PGA Championship: final leaderboard
-9: H Green (Aus); -8: SH Park (Kor) -6: M Reid (Eng), N Korda (US)
Selected others: +1: G Hall (Eng), L Thompson (US); +4: G Dryburgh (Sco)
Full leaderboard

Australia’s Hannah Green won her first major title as she held off defending champion Park Sung-hyun to win the Women’s PGA Championship.

Green, 22, is ranked 114th in the world and had never won an LPGA event before the tournament at Hazeltine National.

England’s Mel Reid held the clubhouse lead on six under as overnight leader Green faltered around the turn.

Park made birdie on the last to reach eight under but Green escaped a bunker to putt for par and win by one stroke.

After rolling in the key putt from around 10 feet on the 18th, she was mobbed by friends on the green and wiped tears from her eyes moments later.

“I am pretty much speechless,” she said after her win at the Minnesota course.

“I was really nervous playing the last five holes and I’m just happy to make that putt on the last. It really is surreal.

“I’ve always wanted to win in front of an Aussie crowd and even though I’m not in Australia, it was like that today. To win a major as my first event, I am over the moon.”

Green had led after 18, 36 and 54 holes and held a one-shot lead going into the final round but gave up three bogeys between holes nine and 12.

She found a sublime birdie putt on 16 to open up a two-stroke advantage but watched from the 18th fairway as Park cut the gap to a single shot with a lengthy putt on the green up ahead.

With the green vacated, she hooked her approach into the sand but found an escape and putt to take the title and become Australia’s first winner of the tournament since Karrie Webb in 2001.

Reid started the final round in 23rd place but carded a six-under-par 66 – the lowest round of the day – to end tied for third with American Nelly Korda.

It is her best finish in a major and only her second top-10 finish. The Derby-born 31-year-old may rue her four-over-par 76 in the second round after finding eight birdies in a sensational final 18 holes.

Green’s win secured the third women’s major title of the year, following successes for South Korea’s Ko Jin-young at the ANA Inspiration and Lee Jeong-eun at the US Open.

The fourth of the five major tournaments in the calendar – The Evian Championship – begins in France on 25 July.

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BBC Sport – Golf

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