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Pinay golfer Yuka Saso wins US Women's Open, ties record as youngest champion

Published Jun 07, 2021 8:55 am

Philippine teenager Yuka Saso has won the US Women’s Champion, being the first Filipino to win the title and tying the record as the youngest winner.

Saso, who has a Filipina mother and a Japanese father, birdied the third playoff hole to beat Japan's Nasa Hataoka and win the US Women's Open at the Olympic Club in San Francisco, California on Sunday.

The 19-year-old golfer shook off two early double bogeys, coming back with late birdies at 16 and 17 in a two-over 73 to thrust herself into a playoff with a four-under total of 280 for 72 holes.

As overnight leader Lexi Thompson faded, Hataoka carded a final-round 68, but after both she and Saso parred both holes of the two-hole aggregate playoff, it was Saso who came up with a birdie at the sudden-death third hole.

 Yuka Saso of the Philippines walks past fans with the Harton S. Semple Trophy after winning the 76th U.S. Women's Open Championship at The Olympic Club in San Francisco, California. Saso won following a three-hole playoff against Nasa Hataoka of Japan. (Ezra Shaw/Getty Images/AFP)

Saso matched South Korean Park In-bee as the youngest winners in the championship's history at 19 years, 11 months and 17 days, and earned her LPGA tour membership.

Saso started the day one shot off Thompson's lead and was in trouble early with double bogeys at the second and third.

Saso has Bulakenya blood as she was born in San Ildefonso, Bulacan. The golfing sensation only turned pro in November 2019, then won two events at the LPGA Tour of Japan. (AFP)