Ariya Jutanugarn Makes History At Honda LPGA Thailand

Ariya Jutanugarn Makes History At Honda LPGA Thailand

Ariya Jutanugarn LPGA Honda
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Ariya Jutanugarn became the first Thai player to win the Honda LPGA Thailand in its 13 year history, claiming the title by just one shot from fellow countrywoman, Atthaya Thitikul.

Ariya Jutanugarn Makes History At Honda LPGA Thailand

The Thai star had started the day five shots back of recent Major champion Patty Tavatanakit (opens in new tab), with the latter holding a one stroke lead over Caroline Masson and Atthaya Thitikul.

Jutanugarn, who was the first ever golfer, male or female, from Thailand to win a Major championship, started brightly, making three birdies in her first three holes.

Back-to-back birdies followed at the sixth and seventh, with the 25-year-old making yet another birdie at the ninth to reach the turn in six-under-par.

With three Thai players covering the top three places of the leaderboard going into the back nine, Thitikul held a one shot advantage.

Ariya Jutanugarn LPGA Honda

Tavatanakit (L) and Thitikul (R) both just missed out on victory. (Photo by Thananuwat Srirasant/Getty Images)

The 18-year-old then birdied the 10th hole to move two clear of Jutanugarn. That lead was soon back to one though, with Jutanugarn making a long birdie putt at the 12th.

After a plethora of pars from the pair, Thitikul would hold a one shot lead with two holes to play.

However, with Jutanugarn adding her ninth birdie of the day at the last hole for a final round 63, Thitikul bogeyed the par-4 17th, a crucial two shot swing that now meant the 18-year-old would need to birdie the last to force a playoff.

Yet more drama would follow though! With the last group playing the par-5 18th, inclement weather suspended play for just over an hour.

As the groups returned to the course, Thitikul couldn't find the desired birdie, meaning that Jutanugarn claimed the title by one shot and her first victory since 2018.

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Speaking after her round, Jutanugarn said: "It was pretty tough because they stopped play and with my momentum I just wanted to know the result, so it's pretty tough.

"But I'm very proud of myself and am always very happy to be here. I've been waiting for so long to win this tournament, so finally I got it."

Matt Cradock
Staff Writer

Matt joined Golf Monthly in February 2021 covering weekend news, before also transitioning to equipment and testing. After freelancing for Golf Monthly and The PGA for 18 months, he was offered a full-time position at the company in October 2022 and continues to cover weekend news and social media, as well as help look after Golf Monthly’s many buyers’ guides and equipment reviews.

Taking up the game when he was just seven years of age, Matt made it into his county squad just a year later and continues to play the game at a high standard, with a handicap of around 2-4. To date, his best round came in 2016, where he shot a six-under-par 66 having been seven-under through nine holes. He currently plays at Witney Lakes in Oxfordshire and his favourite player is Rory McIlroy, despite nearly being struck by his second shot at the 17th during the 2015 BMW PGA Championship.

Matt’s current What’s In The Bag?

Driver: Honma TW747, 8.75°

Fairway Wood: TaylorMade Rocketballz Stage 2, 15°, 19°

Hybrid: Adams Super Hybrid, 22°

Irons: Mizuno MP54, 5-PW

Wedges: Cleveland 588 RTX 2.0 Tour Satin, 50°, 56°, 60°

Putter: Cleveland TFI 2135 Satin Cero

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x