Culture Beat: China LPGA Tour event held in Jiangsu
Published: Sep 03, 2023 10:05 PM
Photo: Courtesy of China Golf Association

Photo: Courtesy of China Golf Association

Thailand's Kusma Meechai won her first tournament in a decade on Friday with a score of 68, defeating compatriot Pakin Kawinpakorn in a second-hole playoff to win the CTBC Ladies Classic, a China LPGA Tour event in East China's Jiangsu Province.

Shi Yuli (70) and Zeng Liqi (70) of China ended one shot out of the playoff, with Cao Xinyu (69) finishing a shot farther behind. 

Tan Lingling (73) and Japan's Senno Yasufuka (73) finished three strokes behind Kawinpakorn in a group that also featured Thai Saraporn Chamchoi (72).

This is Meechai's second straight round of 68, which included five birdies and one bogey.

"This is my second championship in China; the first was many years ago in Wuhan. I'm overjoyed," Meechai said. 

"I want more victories, so I'll work even harder to get the next one. This victory boosts my confidence."

Kawinpakorn, a Kansas University standout, got off to a shaky start with a bogey five on the first round, followed by a triple-bogey on the 158-yard sixth hole when her tee ball landed in the water to reach the turn at 37. She finished with a bogey-free back nine that included three birdies.

"I had a great time this week. I gave it my all. I couldn't have asked for anything better because I had a triple bogey on the front nine and then a lot of birdies going in. It was a fun round for me chasing the championship," said Kawinpakorn, 32, who has not won on the CLPGA Tour since winning the CLPGA Zhuhai Heritage in 2018.