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Tseng gets wish but not title at LPGA

TAIPEI--Taiwan's Yani Tseng finally got the wind she had hoped for all week and a huge crowd to cheer her on, but it was not enough to overcome Suzann Pettersen's hot putter and consistent play in the final round of the 2012 Sunrise Taiwan LPGA Championship yesterday.

Tseng, who was frustrated by her uncooperative putter all week, shot a 71 to finish third with a 15-under-par 273, four shots behind the Norwegian at the US$2 million event.

The win was Pettersen's second consecutive LPGA Tour win after defeating Catriona Matthew in a playoff at the LPGA KEB Hanabank Championship in South Korea last week.

Stuck in a close battle with third-round leader Inbee Park of South Korea for much of the final round, Pettersen opened a two-shot lead on the back nine after sinking a midrange putt on the par-4 15th.

She then finished off her final-round 69, only one of four sub-70 rounds on the day, with a birdie on the par-5 18th to secure the US$300,000 first prize. Park finished second, three shots behind.

Tseng pulled to within two shots of the lead with a birdie on the par-5 13th but was not able to sink birdie putts in the 15- to 25-foot range on the next three holes to fall out of contention for the title.

The world No. 1 Taiwanese player won last year's event, the first LPGA Tour tournament ever played in Taiwan, but a repeat seemed unlikely at the start of the day, with Tseng trailing Park by four shots and Pettersen by two.

She may have been encouraged by the emergence of the wind that she had hoped for after three days of unusually calm weather, but it did not provide the home course advantage she was looking for.

Instead, she was held back by a putter that had no interest in making anything over five feet and of course Pettersen's sparkling play.

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 Lu wins Challenger event in Seoul; 3rd title of 2012 
Suzann Pettersen, of Norway, surveys the approach to the green during the final round of the 2012 Sunrise Taiwan LPGA Championship, yesterday. Pettersen finished the tournament with a 19-under 269.

(CNA)

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