• Henderson’s win at Meijer Classic was a family affair

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    GRAND RAPIDS, United States: Canadian teenager Brooke Henderson became the youngest winner of 2017 on Sunday (Monday in Manila), closing with a bogey-free 66 for a two-stroke victory at the rain-hit Meijer Classic.

    The 19-year-old Henderson claimed the fourth LPGA Tour win of her career by finishing with a 72-hole total of 17-under 263 at the Blythefield Country Club course.

    Brooke Henderson of Canada hits her second shot on the first hole during the final round of the Meijer LPGA Classic at Blythefield Country Club on Monday in Grand Rapids, Michigan. AFP PHOTO

    “I was kind of surprised when I looked at the leaderboard and I had a two-shot lead on the 18th green,” Henderson said. “Super happy and I’m just glad it’s done and I finally have my fourth win.”

    Henderson also won on Father’s Day, so it was fitting that her dad was in the gallery watching her charge to victory.

    “This morning, (my Dad) said, ‘Do it for me,’ so this is definitely for him,” said Henderson, who also had her 26-year-old sister Brittany as her caddie. “He’s my coach, my best friend and a great father, so thank you, Dad!”

    Americans Lexi Thompson (69) and Michelle Wie (65) finished two strokes back of Henderson at 15 under.

    Thailand’s Moriya Jutanugarn shot a 66 to reach 14-under 266 and was tied for fourth with Sweden’s Madelene Sagstrom (65) and Australia’s Oh Su-Hyun (64).

    Organizers had to make changes to the course because of heavy rains. Par was reduced to 69 because of flooding at the number five that turned the hole from a par five to a par three.

    Henderson, whose first victory came in 2015 at the Cambia Portland Classic as a non-LPGA member, also became the 15th different winner on the LPGA Tour in 2017.

    “Just super-excited right now,” Henderson said. “I played really steady golf today. The leaderboard is packed. There are so many great names up there, so to finish on top is really exciting.

    Henderson, who led after the first two rounds, was superb in a final round. She began with six pars before making consecutive birdies at numbers seven and eight and then adding one more birdie at No. 11.

    Thompson, who lost in a playoff last week, fell short of a victory for the second straight week.

    The South Korean-born Oh rolled in four birdies in a five-hole stretch on the front nine en route to the best final-round score of the three in that group with a 64.

    AFP

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