Korda edges Aussie Minjee Lee in LPGA

Minjee Lee finished in a share of second after a playoff at the Taiwan LPGA Swinging Skirts event.
Minjee Lee finished in a share of second after a playoff at the Taiwan LPGA Swinging Skirts event.

History has repeated itself for Australian Minjee Lee, who again finished just short of claiming the LPGA Swinging Skirts to Nelly Korda.

Defending champion Korda birdied the first hole of a three-way playoff on Sunday to win the event.

Korda and Australian Minjee Lee both birdied the final hole of regulation to finish at 18-under 270 and force a playoff with Caroline Masson, who shot a 68.

Korda, who started the final round with a three-stroke lead over Lee (69), looked set to win in regulation after a birdie on the par-five No.12. But she bogeyed three of her final five holes to fall one stroke back of Masson before a birdie on 18 gave her even-par 72.

Masson took the lead after back-to-back birdies on 15 and 16 but closed with par on the final two holes.

In the playoff on the par-five 18th, Korda sank her birdie putt while German Masson and Lee made par.

It was a case of deja vu for Lee, who came close to chasing down Korda at the same event in 2018.

Last year she entered the final round four shots behind Korda before closing with a 66 to finish as the runner-up, two strokes shy of the American who closed with a 68.

The win for Korda also gave her caddie Jason McDede bragging rights over Masson - his fiancee.

McDede and Masson are due to be married next year, and Sunday was the first time they had gone head-to-head vying for an LPGA title.

Masson described the experience as "a little funny" but was magnanimous in defeat.

"I'm quite happy to see them win," she said of the Korda-McDede professional partnership.

"I'm proud of the two of them, the way they work together, and hopefully I get another chance to beat them down the stretch the next few years."

Brooke Henderson shot a 68 to finish regulation tied for fourth, four strokes back with South Koreans Sei Young Kim and Mi Jung Hur.

Australian Associated Press