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Hyo Joo Kim accepts an LPGA gift in Singapore

Hyo Joo Kim wins 2021 HSBC Women's World Championship in Singapore
Winner Hyo Joo Kim (right) receives congratulations from playing competitor Sophia Popov at the HSBC Women’s World Championship on Saturday in Singapore.

After shooting flawless 8-under 64 at HSBC Women’s World event, Kim watches as Hannah Green bogeys final 2 holes to lose by 1

Hyo Joo Kim played a flawless final round at the LPGA's HSBC Women’s World Championship in Singapore but still needed some help before she could hold the trophy.

She got it.

Australia’s Hannah Green, who held a one-stroke lead with two holes to play, bogeyed her final two holes at Sentosa Golf Club and handed the victory to Kim, who had finished earlier and watched the wreckage unfold late Saturday.

Kim, who had started the day five strokes out of the lead, shot a bogey-free 8-under 64 and then waited in the clubhouse as Green three-putted the 71st hole and failed to get up and down to save par on the final hole. Kim finished at 17-under 271, one stroke ahead of Green, who closed with a 69. South Korea’s Inbee Park and Thailand’s Patty Tavatanakit, both of whom already have won this season, shared third place with China Xiyu Lin, the 54-hole leader, at 15-under 273. (For scores, click here.)

Kim ran off a string of eight birdies in 11 holes, from Nos. 5 through 15, as she hit 13 of 14 fairways and 16 of 18 greens. At her only two missed greens, she made sand saves. In winning for the fourth time on the LPGA, Kim, 25, ends a five-year winless streak. She is a 12-time winner on the Korean LPGA. Kim earned $240,000 from the $1.6 million purse.

“Winning after such a long time, it feels like my first win of all,” Kim said. “I thought everybody had the opportunity to win. I didn’t make any mistakes on the front nine, and as I went to the back nine, I felt I might be able to win it.”

During the COVID-19 pandemic last year, Kim opted to remain in her homeland and play on the Korean LPGA. She won twice and posted six other top-10 results in 14 starts.

After Americans had won the first three tournaments of the year, South Koreans have won two of the past five titles.

Brittany Altamore finished as the top American, at T-12.

Green, 24, who posted both of her LPGA victories in 2019, nonetheless leaves Singapore with some positive vibes after her second consecutive finish of third place or better.

“I felt a little nerves on the last, which is nice,” she said, “because I guess having the spectators out there, it kind of meant something to me. So, I’m obviously very close, so I just hope that I can continue this momentum and, who knows, have a good result next week.”

The Singapore stop precedes this week’s Honda LPGA Thailand event before the women’s tour returns to America for the heart of its 2021 schedule, with nine tournaments in as many weeks.

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