Feng projected No. 1 after Blue Bay LPGA win in China
HAINAN, China—Shanshan Feng carded a 2-under 70 on Saturday, Nov. 11, for a one-shot win at the Blue Bay LPGA tournament in Hainan, China, moving her to the projected No. 1 player in the world.
The 28-year-old Feng's victory in her home country was celebrated by the fans and her fellow Chinese golfers, who showered her with water on the 18th green. She finished the four days with a 9-under 279 total.
Feng is projected to became the first golfer—male or female—from China to ascend to the top of the Rolex Rankings, which will be released Monday.
"I'm really, really excited and very proud of myself and I think it's special because I won this tournament to become world No. 1. I finished first in China, so I actually claimed the world No. 1 in front of all the people at home," Feng said. "I'm really happy about that, and I hope all the Chinese are going to be watching me and the Chinese can play golf. Hopefully there will be more Chinese getting on the tours and more world No. 1's coming up from China."
Feng, who won last week's TOTO Japan Classic, became the first back-to-back winner this year on the LPGA Tour. She also won her second event in China, the first being the Reignwood LPGA Classic in Beijing in 2013.
"I just want 2017 keep going. A never-ending 2017, that would be great," Feng said.
Thailand's Moriya Jutanugarn finished second at 8 under after shooting a final-round 70, narrowly missing a six-foot birdie attempt on the 72nd hole after her putt lipped out.
Feng tapped in for par on the par-5 18th after Jutanugarn couldn't convert.
"I was not trying to watch because I know that even I hope that she would make it. Then, I mean, after, even though she made it, I still have to make my par putt, so I tried not to watch her," Feng said. "But I mean, she just missed it and now I've got a trophy in my hand."
For Jutanugarn, it marked her sixth top-5 finish of the year. She is still hunting for her first win on the LPGA Tour.
"Of course everybody is cheering for her. I mean, Shanshan is a great player, and very happy for her that she played really solid," Jutanugarn said. "I mean, she had a really good week in her home country, which is really cool."
A foursome of golfers finished tied for fourth, including South Korean Sung Hyun Park (72)—whose reign as world No. 1 is projected to come to an end after just one week—South African Ashleigh Buhai (73), and Americans Megan Khang (68) and Jessica Korda (71).
American Lizette Salas (73), who notched her fourth top-10 finish in five tournaments during the Asian Swing, tied for 10th at 2 under.
"Conditions were really tough this weekend," Salas said. "I have to think really positive. There's one more event, and I get to go home. There's a lot of positives to go into next week. You know, finishing top-10, four out of the five Asia tournaments, (I'm) pretty pleased. My body is holding up, which I'm really shocked at this point."
The LPGA Tour heads back to the United States next week for the CME Group Tour Championship, the final event of the 2017 season in Naples, Fla.