Lydia Ko proved yet again why she is the undisputed number one player on the World Amateur Golf Ranking with an outstanding performance in the Kraft Nabisco Championship, the first major of the year.
Ko earned low amateur honours for the third time in a major championship by finishing joint 25th. The New Zealander returned a final round 69, 3-under-par, to better Curtis Cup player Stephanie Meadow, ranked 11th on the WAGR table, by three shots.
The world number one also earned low amateur honours in last year’s US Women’s Open and Women’s British Open.
German amateurs enjoyed a productive week with wins from Laura Funfstuck and Sophia Popov. Funfstuck won the Internationaux De France Juniors Championship, and celebrates with a massive climb of 845 places up this week’s WAGR table to world number 55.
Popov, meanwhile, triumphed in the SDSU Farms Invitational at the Farms Golf Club in Rancho Santé Fe, California, on the US College circuit. Popov’s 1-over-par total of 217 was good enough for a one shot victory over Manon Gidali of the University of Arizona.
Popov moves 20 spots this week to 89th, while France’s Gidali improves 21 places to 60th.
Korea’s Julie Yang jumps 337 places on this week’s table to 200th following an emphatic victory in the SMU Dallas Athletic Club Invitational at the Dallas Athletic Club. The Oklahoma State player eased to a seven-shot victory over world number eight Chirapat Jao-Javanil of Thailand, a student at the University Oklahoma.
Jessica Alexander of the United States climbs 137 places this week to 143rd after defeating England’s Hayley Davis by a shot to win the Rebel Intercollegiate. Baylor University player Davis climbs 23 spots to 61st.
Cory Whitsett turned up for the Aggie Invitational at the Traditions Golf Club in Bryan, Texas to find a stellar field, but ended up taking on his University of Alabama teammates for the title.
The third-year student managed to edge out fellow Alabama players Bobby Wyatt and Scott Strohmeyer to win his second tournament in a row, and fifth of his Alabama career. Whitsett won the Linger Longer Invitational last month and carried that form into one of the strongest tournaments on the US college circuit.
Rounds of 69, 69 and 70 gave Whitsett a 54-hole total of 208, 8-under-par, to edge out Wyatt by a shot and Strohmeyer by two strokes. Whitsett climbs 13 places on this week’s World Amateur Golf Ranking to 18th. Wyatt moves one spot to world number three, while Strohmeyer jumps 75 places 87th.
Nathan Kimsey won the Terra Cotta Invitational at Naples National Golf Club in Naples, Florida. The England international took the title after a tense tussle with Robby Shelton of the United States. The two players shared the 36-hole lead and were still tied after 17 holes of the final round. However, Shelton bogeyed the 18th and Kimsey made par to secure the victory.
Kimsey moves six spots on this week’s table to 27th, while Shelton climbs four places to world number 21.
Sweden’s Sebastian Soderberg improves to 63rd on this week’s WAGR table after emerging victorious from a five-hole sudden death playoff in the Insperity ASU Invitational at Forest Hills Golf Club in Augusta, Georgia. A birdie at the fifth extra hole enabled the Coastal Carolina University student to defeat Gregory Eason of the University of Central Florida after the pair had tied on scores of 7-under-par 209.
Soderberg jumps 31 places this week, while English amateur Eason moves to world number 43 from his previous position at 68th.