Reuters - Mon, 28 Jun 10:15:00 2010
American Cristie Kerr won the LPGA Championship by a record 12 shots to take over as the new world number one in women's golf.
Kerr captured her second major in three years with a staggering performance at the Locust Hill Country Club, giving her rivals no chance after starting the final day with an eight-stroke lead.
The 32-year-old closed with a superb final round of six-under-par 66 to finish 19-under-par and eclipse Betsy King's 11-stroke winning margin in the 1992 LPGA Championship, the second of the four majors on the women's golf calendar.
"I don't think I could have played better," Kerr said. "I put up a dream performance ... this is similar to what Tiger (Woods) did at Pebble Beach (in 2000).
"You can ask anybody else, they had a real tough time with the course, and I just had a dream performance.
"But winning by 12 shots is ridiculous. It's obscene.
"I wanted to see how well I could do when I didn't limit myself, and I am going to keep doing that I hope."
Kim Song-hee shot 69 to claim outright second at seven-under while her fellow South Korean Shin Jiyai carded a 71 to finish tied for third a further two shots back with Japan's Ai Miyazato, who matched Kerr's closing round of 66.
Miyazato took over the number one ranking last week but had to finish second behind Kerr to retain her place at the top of a tight rankings list.
Kerr, who won her only previous major at the 2007 U.S. Open, became just the fifth player, but the fourth in the last two months, to hold the top spot since official rankings were introduced in 2006.
Sweden's Annika Sorenstam held the number one ranking for 60 weeks before retiring in 2007 and handing the top spot to Mexico's Lorena Ochoa, who remained at the top for more than three years.
Shin took over as number one for seven weeks when Ochoa retired last month before she was overtaken by Miyazato and now Kerr, who has now won 14 times on the LPGA tour.
"I always wanted to be the number one player in the world," Kerr said. "I take great pride in being the top American.
"But you have to perform every week to do that. I'm there now, but I have to prove that I deserve to be there so there is still a lot of work ahead.
"(But) it feels awfully good right now."Reuters