It seemed too late for South Korean golfer Lee Mi-rim to clinch a win as she was two shots behind the leader Nelly Korda at the par-5 18th hole. Lee went for the green on her second shot but the ball crossed the green and rolled to the fence.
Looking calm and relaxed, Lee shot a light and bold chip shot towards the hole. The ball rolled fast about nine meters on the green and hit the flagpole before slipping into the hole. That miraculous chip-in eagle gave Lee a spot in a three-way playoff. Lee smiled and looked at her caddie in disbelief.
No one could stop Lee in the playoff. Returning to the 18th tee, both Brooke Henderson and Nelly Korda missed their birdie attempts. But Lee composedly holed a 2-meter birdie putt, clinching her first major LPGA title.
By performing a fantastic short game on Sunday, Lee has become the “Lady of the Pond” by winning the ANA Inspiration, the second major tournament on the LPGA Tour, at the Mission Hills Country Club in Rancho Mirage, California. The tournament has a tradition, where the champion jumps into the pond next to the 18th hole called, “Poppie’s Pond.”
Lee managed a 5-under 67 in the fourth round including one eagle, four birdies, and one bogey, finishing the tournament with a four-day total of 15-under 273. It is her fourth career win and first victory in three and a half years since she last won the Kia Classic in March 2017.