Nelly Korda justified her current world number one standing in women’s golf as she overcame a triple-bogey seven on the penultimate hole to win the LPGA Tour’s Pelican Women’s Championship in Florida on Sunday.
Nelly Korda made such a mess of the 17th hole that missing what amounts to a tap-in is barely registered. She made triple bogey and part of her couldn’t help but think she had thrown away her chances in the Pelican Women’s Championship.
She birdied the 18th and got a second chance when Lexi Thompson had another late collapse, this time going bogey-bogey, that turned an epic duel between Korda and Thompson into a four-way playoff.
Korda ended it quickly, making a 12-foot birdie putt on the first playoff hole at No. 18 to win for the fourth time this year on the LPGA Tour.
Korda fell out of the lead on the 17th hole at Pelican Golf Club by chopping her way to a triple bogey to fall two shots behind. She answered with an 18-foot birdie putt on the final hole for a 1-under 69 and got into a playoff when Thompson missed another par putt and shot 69.
They were joined at 17-under 263 by defending champion Sei Young Kim and Lydia Ko, neither of whom expected to be playing extra holes until Thompson and Korda imploded over the final two holes.
The victory paid off handsomely for the 23-year-old American.
She secured her spot at No. 1 in the women’s world ranking and moved 12 points ahead of Jin Young Ko for LPGA player of the year going into the season-ending CME Group Tour Championship next week in Naples.
Korda now has five wins this year four on the LPGA Tour to match Jin Young Ko’s total, Korda won a gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics.