KARRIE WEBB went oh so close to an historic eight major at the 2014 Evian Championship in France on the weekend, cruelled by a two stroke turnaround on the final hole.
The 39 year old Aussie was devastated after losing to 19 year old Korean Hyo Joo Kim by a single stroke.
The pair started the final round together at the Evian Resort Golf Club in Evian-les-Bains with Kim, playing her first ever major, leading by a stroke.
Kim was 4-under par through 12 holes and led by as many as three shots early on but two untimely bogeys on Nos. 14 and 16 opened the door for Webb. The duo was tied at 11-under par on the 16th hole when Kim missed a 10-foot par putt for her first bogey of the day.
Webb sank her four-foot par putt to stay at 11-under par and took the lead for the first time all week.
After both players made pars on No. 17, Webb appeared nerveless as she walked to the final hole with a one-shot lead, on the verge of becoming the first player ever to win six different major championships.
While Webb wasn’t able to get her 4-iron approach shot to cut into the 18th green, leaving her on the left fringe, Kim stepped up and hit a remarkable utility iron shot into the green. Needing a birdie to tie Webb, the South Korean hit her approach shot to 12-feet and gave herself a great opportunity.
“This was the best nervous time ever,” Kim said after her victory.
Webb meanwhile was faced with a tricky downhill shot from the left side of the green on 18. She chose to use a belly wedge and the shot came agonizingly close to going in the hole before running 10 feet past. That’s when Kim stepped up and drained her birdie putt, leaving Webb in a situation where she had to sink her par putt just to force a playoff. But as soon as Webb struck the putt, she knew she had missed it and Kim was left to celebrate her first LPGA victory.
“The shot was really impressive,” Webb said of Kim’s approach into the 18th. “I let the foot off the pedal a little bit, which probably let her have a little bit more of a free putt at it. But she still had to make it and she did.
“Impressive for a 19?year old. The putt’s probably 19?year old nerves, but the shot is definitely very mature. She played great today.”
It wasn’t the finish Webb wanted but the Aussie veteran was looking at the positives after making recent swing changes under new coach Mike McGetrick.
“I hit shots today that I don’t think I’ve ever been able to hit, so I’m really excited about that,” Webb said. “Obviously wasn’t meant to be. I believe in fate a little bit, and I wasn’t meant to win.”
Kim and Webb both finished with 3-under 68’s, at 11-under and 10-under respectively.
Nice little earner for Minjee Lee
Minjee Lee (71) was the next best placed Aussie, finishing on 1-under tied for 16th and pocketing $42,329 in her first week as a pro golfer.Evian Championship Results