Thailand’s Paphangkorn Tavatanakit wins ANA Inspiration

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Paphangkorn “Pro Miao” Tavatanakit won the LPGA’s first major of the year, the ANA Inspiration in Rancho Mirage, Calif., USA.

Paphangkorn “Pro Miao” Tavatanakit held off a late surge by world #1 Lydia Ko to win the LPGA’s first major of the year, the ANA Inspiration in Rancho Mirage, Calif., USA.

Paphangkorn, who led for all four days April 1 – 4, said she was unaware New Zealand’s Ko was producing a record outing in the final round on Sunday.



“I didn’t look at the leaderboard at all today,” Paphangkorn said. “I saw her name up there, but I didn’t look at it — I wanted to play my own game, which I did, and did a really good job of that today.”

The Thai chipped in for eagle on the par-5 second, carded two birdies and produced par save after par save in her bogey-free round for a total 18 under par 270.



Ko, who started the day tied for seventh at six under par, eight strokes behind Paphangkorn, matched Lorena Ochoa’s 2006 tournament record with a 62, shooting 7-under 29 on the front nine for the best nine-hole score in event’s 50-year history.

Miao receives a champagne shower after sinking her final putt on the 18th to win the tournament.

Five strokes ahead entering the day and six in front after the eagle, Paphangkorn shot a 4-under 68 in 100-degree heat to beat Ko by two strokes in the first major championship of the year.

A day after matching the tournament 54-hole record of 14 under set by Pernilla Lindberg in her 2018 victory, Tavatanakit finished a stroke off Dottie Pepper’s 72-hole mark of 19 under set in 1999.

Paphangkorn also won low amateur at the tournament in 2019.

“It’s a dream come true,” she said at the news conference. “Every time I play here I remember exactly I was on this green receiving my low amateur award and I saw they were jumping and I took a Snapchat and the caption was, ‘One day.’ It’s been crazy.”

“It still hasn’t really sunk in yet the fact that I just turned 21 six months ago and now I’m a major champion in my rookie year,” Tavatanakit said. “Just crazy.”

She can now go a bit crazier with the 465,000 US dollars or about 14.5 million baht prize money.

RANCHO MIRAGE, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 04: Patty Tavatanakit of Thailand chips in for an eagle on the second hole during the final round of the ANA Inspiration at the Dinah Shore course at Mission Hills Country Club on April 04, 2021 in Rancho Mirage, California. (Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images)



RANCHO MIRAGE, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 04: Patty Tavatanakit of Thailand celebrates by taking the Poppie’s Pond leap and winning the ANA Inspiration at the Dinah Shore course at Mission Hills Country Club on April 04, 2021 in Rancho Mirage, California. (Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images)