Women's British Open: Hinako Shibuno wins in major championship debut

Sporting News

Hinako Shibuno impressed in her major championship debut.

The 20-year-old Japanese golfer had never before played on the LPGA Tour, let alone a major, but she was able to hold off the rest of the field to claim the Women's British Open championship at 18 under.

Shibuno shot one of her worst rounds of the weekend Sunday at the Marquess' Course at Woburn Golf and Country Club in Buckinghamshire, England. She carded a 4-under 68 after rounds of 66, 69 and 67 to open the tournament.

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She began play on the final day with a two-stroke lead but quickly lost it after a double bogey on the par-4 3rd hole. Shibuno was able to bounce back with a couple of birdies on the front nine but again carded a bogey before the turn. She kept her composure over the last nine holes and capped off play with a birdie on 18.

Shibuno was able to edge out LPGA veteran Lizette Salas, who carded a 7-under 65 to jump up the leaderboard with the lowest score of the day.

Salas finished in second (17 under) for her best finish at a major.

''I told myself, 'You got this. You're made for this.' I put a good stroke on it. I'm not going to lie, I was nervous,'' Salas told media after her round. ''You know, I haven't been in that position in a long time. Gave it a good stroke. I controlled all my thoughts. It just didn't drop.''

Three-time major winner Jin Young Ko finished in third place (16 under) while Morgan Pressel finished fourth (15 under) and Ashleigh Buhai rounded out the top five in fifth place (14 under).

Buhai had high praise for the newest LPGA major champion.

''She just gets up and rips it. She did really great,'' Buhai said about Shibuno.

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