A Lim Kim finishes in style to equal record US Open comeback

Korean 25-year-old shoots a final round of 67 to secure Major victory by one in Houston

A Lim Kim celebrates her US Open win. Photograph: David J Phillip/AP

A Lim Kim celebrates her US Open win. Photograph: David J Phillip/AP

 

A Lim Kim made her first US Women’s Open appearance a memorable one on Monday, closing with three straight birdies to tie the record for the largest comeback in the tournament’s history and win the biggest event in women’s golf.

Starting the final, frigid round at Champions Golf Club five shots behind, the 25-year-old South Korean wore a heavy down jacket between shots and delivered a four-under 67 for a one-shot victory over Amy Olson and Jin Young Ko.

Kim became the seventh player to rally from five shots behind in the final round of the US Women’s Open, and the first since Annika Sorenstam at The Broadmoor in 1995.

Olson held her own amid the grief of learning her father-in-law died unexpectedly on Saturday night. She was in tears on Sunday morning on the range, before rain pushed the final round to Monday.

Olson, winless in seven years on the LPGA Tour, had a two-shot lead on the back nine after the 54-hole leader, Hinako Shibuno, faltered. But she couldn’t do anything about Kim’s late charge, and Olson fell back when her hybrid on the par-three 16th bounded over the green and into thick, brown rough, leading to bogey. She birdied the final hole for a 72 after Kim had already secured the title.

A Lim Kim reacts after making a birdie on the 18th in Houston. Photograph: Eric Gay/AP
A Lim Kim reacts after making a birdie on the 18th in Houston. Photograph: Eric Gay/AP

Ko, the number one player in the world who only recently returned from South Korea where she rode out the Covid-19 pandemic, also birdied the 18th when it was too late to catch Kim. Ko closed with a 68, one of only six players to break par in the final round. Shibuno closed with a 74 and finished two shots back.

Kim finished at three-under 281 and won $1m. She added to South Korean dominance of this major, the ninth winner in the last 13 years.

Collated final round scores in the US Women’s Open Conducted by the USGA (USA unless stated, par 71):

281 A Lim Kim (Kor) 68 74 72 67

282 Amy Olson 67 72 71 72, Jin Young Ko (Kor) 73 70 71 68

283 Hinako Shibuno (Jpn) 68 67 74 74

285 Megan Khang 70 69 74 72

286 Moriya Jutanugarn (Tha) 68 72 72 74, Inbee Park (Kor) 71 72 75 68, Jeongeun Lee (Kor) 73 69 73 71

287 Ariya Jutanugarn (Tha) 70 70 74 73, (a) Kaitlyn Papp 71 68 74 74

288 Sayaka Takahashi (Jpn) 73 72 72 71, Min-Young Lee (Kor) 74 68 76 70

289 (a) Yuka Saso (Phl) 69 71 77 72, Haeran Ryu (Kor) 72 72 70 75, Maja Stark (Swe) 70 72 73 74, (a) Gabriela Ruffels (Aus) 71 72 76 70, Lydia Ko (Nzl) 71 70 72 76, Linnea Strom (Swe) 69 75 73 72, Eri Okayama (Jpn) 76 69 72 72

290 So Yeon Ryu (Kor) 72 73 73 72, Sei Young Kim (Kor) 72 69 73 76, Ally Ewing 73 72 76 69

291 Chella Choi (Kor) 73 72 75 71, Jenny Shin 72 70 77 72, Jessica Korda 72 73 74 72, Cristie Kerr 71 69 74 77, Nasa Hataoka (Jpn) 71 73 75 72, Sarah Schmelzel 71 69 76 75, Linn Grant (Swe) 69 69 78 75

292 Madelene Sagstrom (Swe) 74 71 72 75, Hye Jin Choi (Kor) 70 73 76 73, Jennifer Kupcho 70 72 75 75, Ashleigh Buhai (Rsa) 71 69 79 73, Charley Hull (Eng) 69 73 78 72, Ingrid Lindblad (Swe) 72 69 74 77, Cheyenne Knight 75 69 72 76, Bronte Law (Eng) 73 72 71 76, Ji Yeong Kim (Kor) 75 70 67 80, Lauren Stephenson 72 72 74 74

293 Yealimi Noh 72 69 72 80, Perrine Delacour (Fra) 72 71 73 77, Hannah Green (Aus) 72 73 73 75, Sophia Popov (Ger) 69 76 75 73

294 Stacy Lewis 72 68 77 77, Brooke M. Henderson (Can) 72 73 77 72

295 Pauline Roussin-Bouchard (Fra) 70 72 75 78, Gaby Lopez (Mex) 74 71 74 76, Brittany Lincicome 70 75 73 77, Lindsey Weaver 70 70 75 80, Minjee Lee (Aus) 74 71 75 75, Lizette Salas 72 69 75 79

296 Danielle Kang 72 71 79 74, Seon Woo Bae (Kor) 75 68 76 77

297 Jennifer Song 77 68 76 76, Mone Inami (Jpn) 73 71 76 77, Azahara Munoz (Spa) 71 70 78 78, Anna Nordqvist (Swe) 73 71 75 78

298 Mi Hyang Lee (Kor) 72 73 79 74, Pernilla Lindberg (Swe) 74 70 75 79

299 Yui Kawamoto (Jpn) 73 72 74 80

300 Mamiko Higa (Jpn) 73 72 75 80, Mina Harigae 70 74 77 79

301 Narin An (Kor) 72 72 79 78, Jodi Ewart Shadoff (Eng) 70 72 79 80

303 Kana Mikashima (Jpn) 75 69 80 79

304 Su Oh (Aus) 75 70 78 81

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