Lilia Vu claims second career major at Women’s Open with dominant final-round performance

Lilia Vu

Lilia Vu notched her second career major at the Women's Open at Walton Heath Golf Club.

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After Saturday’s third round of the Women’s Open at Walton Heath Golf Club in Surrey, England, it appeared as though Sunday’s final round would be a shootout.

Emergent American star Lilia Vu held a one-shot co-lead alongside local favorite, Englishwoman Charley Hull, and a bevy of contenders were lurking: Angel Yin, Amy Yang, Jiyai Shin and Nelly Korda.

But a stunningly dominant performance by Vu put any thoughts of a nail-biting finish to rest.

Vu took control early, opening up a solid lead at the turn while Hull, her primary adversary, made two bogeys on her first four holes.

Hull bounced back with an eagle on the par-5 11th, but that only brought her within three shots of Vu’s lead. Vu pressed on, birdieing the 12th to go four under on the day. A bogey on the par-4 15th for Vu proved to be inconsequential, as Hull bogeyed too. Ultimately, the other contenders who were in the mix for three rounds failed to mount a serious charge, enabling Vu to enjoy a relatively unchallenged path to victory.

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Vu appeared calm and collected down the stretch and stepped onto the 18th tee with a five-shot lead, then drained a lengthy putt for birdie to put an exclamation point on what ultimately became a six-stroke win. As soon as the putt dropped, Vu received a champagne shower from her peers to celebrate. Vu’s final-round score of five-under 67 was the low score of the day.

The victory marked Vu’s third of the LPGA season, and her second major, after she triumphed at the Chevron Championship in a playoff earlier this year. It’s the first time an American has claimed the title at the Women’s Open since Mo Martin’s win in 2014.

Hull, meanwhile, had to settle for her second runner-up finish in a major championship this season, after also falling short at the U.S. Women’s Open at Pebble Beach.

Vu spent 31 week’s as the world’s top-ranked amateur and was a standout at UCLA. With this victory, Vu will ascend to the top spot on the Rolex ranking for the first time, usurping fellow American Nelly Korda, who finished T11.

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