Chevron Championships: Lilia Wu channels late grandfather’s reminiscence to win first main title

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CNN
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Lilia Vu gained the Chevron Championship on Sunday, overtaking American compatriot Angel Yin in a playoff to seal the primary main of her profession at The Woodlands, Texas.

Wu was 4 photographs behind co-leader Yin within the last spherical, however rallied with 5 birdies – together with two from shut vary – to tie the world No. 172 at 10-under and power a playoff. Within the first replay of the 18th gap, the 25-year-old holed a curved birdie putt to win when Yin’s second shot went into the water.

After some time, it was Wu’s flip to search out water. Leaping into Poppy’s Pond has been a long-standing custom for The Champions at Mission Hills in California, which hosted the key from its inception till its relocation to Carlton Woods in 2023.

Wu wasted no time renewing the ritual, diving into the lake subsequent to the 18th inexperienced to toast her second LPGA Tour victory and the winner’s test for $765,000, the most important of her profession. It took a outstanding victory for the world No. 12 after early struggles as a professional practically dropped him from the game.

“Every part occurs for a motive,” Wu instructed reporters.

“All of the dangerous issues, every thing I’ve ever struggled with, family-wise, internally, I take into account myself the most important impediment, I’ve had a reasonably robust, not straightforward, previous two days.

“I used to be undoubtedly my very own enemy, and I do not understand how I pulled it off. I am actually completely satisfied and pleased with Cole (Caddy) and I for doing this.

Regardless of a embellished newbie profession, Wu has had a torrid begin to life on the LPGA Tour, making the lower simply as soon as in her first 9 begins since turning skilled in early 2019.

She wouldn’t play one other LPGA occasion till 2022, by which level she had misplaced a inventive determine in her life. Vu’s grandfather, who fled his native Vietnam along with his mom, died within the early levels of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Amidst effervescent frustration throughout a moist and windy last spherical, it was the reminiscence of his grandfather that stored Wu grounded.

Wu makes a putt on the 18th green.

“I used to be in such a foul place with my golf sport. Every part was life or loss of life,” Wu mentioned. “I noticed everybody I competed with being profitable, and I simply in contrast myself on a regular basis.

“However I do know now that everybody’s journey is completely different, and every thing occurs for a motive… Even right this moment, I used to be getting actually nervous on the course, and I simply needed to remind myself, like ‘Grandpa. He’s with you, and should you had been getting upset like this and also you didn’t do your job correctly, then be dissatisfied.

“I believe he would say all my struggles had been value it,” she mentioned.

After winning, Wu is sprayed with champagne.

Runner-up Yin was upbeat regardless of being upset and lacking out on his first profession main. The 24-year-old, the runner-up on the US Open in 2019, seemed set for victory earlier than back-to-back birdies on the 16th and 17th holes opened the door for Wu.

A urgent birdie on the ultimate gap to power a playoff prompted a powerful response, however Yin’s fightback was in the end drowned by her subsequent shot within the water.

“I actually did not really feel very nervous this week, even on this stretch,” Yin instructed reporters.

“My caddy was telling me to relax, however apart from that, I actually actually wasn’t feeling a lot. I am actually mellow. So it is a lack of emotion, and I am not crying.

She mentioned, “I’m actually pleased with who I’m, the place I’m and what I’m doing now.

Yin drives from the third tee during the final round.

World No. 2 Nelly Korda completed one stroke wanting reaching the play-off in third place, with Thailand’s Athaya Thitikul topping the five-player group, tied for fourth at eight-under par.

In the meantime, Jennifer Kupcho mounted a critical try and defend her title, making the lower and ending tied for 108th at six over par.

The ladies’s golf main calendar continues on June 6 with the US Open in Pebble Seashore, California.

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