Lydia Ko strolls to Taiwan win and No1 ranking

Lydia Ko ran away with the LPGA Taiwan Championship to regain the No 1 spot in the women’s world rankings.

Lydia Ko after winning the LPGA Taiwan Championship. Picture: AP
Lydia Ko after winning the LPGA Taiwan Championship. Picture: AP

The 18-year-old New Zealander holed a 30-yard pitch for eagle on the par-5 12th and finished with a seven-under 65 in sunny, breezy conditions at Miramar for a nine-stroke victory.

Ko took the top spot in the world from South Korea’s Inbee Park with her fifth LPGA Tour victory of the season and the tenth of her career. Park skipped her title defence at Miramar to play in a South Korea LPGA event, where she tied for ­second.

“Winning and playing well at an event is the top priority,” Ko said. “And then if you get the extra bonus with it, it’s even better. The winning part is probably the most memorable. I haven’t really thought about being world No 1 again.”

Elswehere, Denmark’s Emily Pedersen completed a wire-to-wire victory to claim her first professional title in the Hero Women’s Indian Open. The 19-year-old rookie carded a closing 73 to finish level par at DLF Golf and Country Club, one shot ahead of fellow Dane Malene Jorgensen, Wales’s Becky Morgan and American Cheyenne Woods, the niece of 14-time major winner Tiger Woods.

In the US, two Scots – Gemma Dryburgh and ­Sally Watson – were on course to qualify for the LPGA Final Qualifying School. Needing to be among the top 80 and ties Dryburgh was lying joint eighth after 54 holes and Watson was joint 50th.