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Ko grabs third successive top-10 finish

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 20/03/2017

World No.1 Lydia Ko has finished in a share of eighth place at the LPGA tournament in Phoenix, Arizona, after firing a solid final round four-under 68.

The 19-year-old New Zealander went bogey-free across all four rounds to join Thailand's Moriya Jutanugarn six shots off the winning pace set by Sweden's Anna Nordqvist.

Opening rounds of 68 and 69 had left Ko lagging at Desert Ridge in a share of 40th at the halfway mark, but she found form with a vengeance on day three.

Ko fired a flawless nine-under 63, her round including seven birdies over the last nine holes.

"I actually hit my shots into the green really close, and I had so many great looks for birdies," she said.

"I was stroking it well, so I just trusted my read and put a good stroke on it."

It's Ko's third successive top-10 finish after she placed ninth in Singapore two weeks ago and eighth the week before that in Thailand.

She has been building steadily after beginning the year with a 46th placing at the Women's Australian Open in Adelaide in February.

Nordqvist had grabbed the lead with a blistering 11-under 61 third round, two strokes clear of Ariya Jutanugarn (Thailand) and American Stacy Lewis.

She maintained her winning margin with a final round four-under 68 to take her seventh LPGA Tour victory by two strokes from world No.2 Ariya Jutanugarn, Korea's In Gee Chun and Lewis.

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