The site for
golf news
you can't find
anywhere else!
Webmaster: Gillian Kirkwood
Contributing Editor: Colin Farquharson

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Catriona Matthew wins $100,000 first

prize in Rio de Janeiro

North Berwick's Catriona Matthew carded a final-round 3-under-par 69 to earn a five-stroke victory at the inaugural HSBC LPGA Brasil Cup 2009 at Itanhanga Golf Club in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil today.
With the victory, Matthew took home the $100,000 first-place cheque and her first-ever unofficial win on the LPGA Tour. The 39-year-old has two official victories on the LPGA Tour at the 2001 Cup Noodles Hawaiian Ladies Open and most recently at the 2004 Wendy’s Championship for Children.
“This comes as a bit of a surprise having not played in a month,” said Matthew, who is expecting her second child in May.
“Being pregnant, I didn’t know what to expect, but I’m delighted.”
Matthew birdied the first hole for the second consecutive day, but dropped the shot with a bogey on the second hole. She carded back-to-back birdies on holes five and six and a fourth birdie on hole 14 to finish her scoring for the week. Matthew, who expects to play only one more tournament this season, finished with a six-under-par total of 138at 6-under-par which gave her a runaway five-shot winning margin over American Kristy McPherson (71-72=143).
Last year, the Scot had three top-10 finishes including a tie for second at the Sybase Classic Presented by ShopRite.
“Really, it wasn’t until the last three holes, after 16, where I felt I had it won,” Matthew said. “We all enjoyed playing here in Brazil.”
McPherson was the only other player under par for the two-day, 36-hole tournament. The South Carolinian finished at even-par 72 for the day following four birdies and four bogies.
“I’m pleased,” McPherson said. “Catriona played great. I hit the ball great yesterday and not so great today. I was still rusty, but this was an opportunity to play against some top girls.”
The inaugural HSBC LPGA Brasil Cup 2009 featured an unofficial money purse of $500,000 and a 15-player field. The event was the LPGA Tour’s first-ever tournament in Brazil.
Brazil native Angela Park carded a 3-over-par 75 today to finish third.
Playing in front of the weekend’s largest galleries, Park put herself out of contention on Sunday with a double bogey, bogey, bogey finish, but still managed to claim the $40,000 third-place check.
England's Karen Stupples tied for 12th place on 153 (780-75) and earned $15,500.
Three-under-par 69
Hole 1, 279-yard, par-4: birdie – sand wedge to 4 feet.
Hole 2, 419-yard, par-4: bogey – pulled second shot into bunker, missed 20-foot par putt.
Hole 5, 461-yard, par-5: birdie – sand wedge to 6 feet.
Hole 6, 168-yard, par-3: birdie – 5-iron to 25 feet.
Hole 14, 330-yard, par-4: birdie – 9-iron to 15 feet
MIKE SCANLAN: Catriona, congratulations on winning the HSBC LPGA Brasil Cup 2009. If you would, tell us about your weekend and how good to feels to be in the winner’s circle.
CATRIONA: This comes as a bit of a surprise having not played in a month. Being pregnant, I didn’t know what to expect, but I’m delighted.
Q. Talk about being able to play while you’re pregnant.
CATRIONA: That’s the beauty of it. People can play golf from five-year-olds to 90-year-olds. So golf is one of the few sports where anyone can play.
Q. Golf is not well-known in Brazil. Do you believe events like this will help to grow golf?CATRIONA. Yes, I think it’s great. We all enjoyed playing here in Brazil. You’ve got some good crowds out here. A lot of people came out to watch. The more it’s on television and the more it’s up there, the bigger the sport can get. This is a great golf course and you have some great courses. Obviously with Angela (Park) and Candy (Hannemann) doing well, that will help the sport.
Q. On the seventh hole, Angela came within one shot of you. Do you think that was the turning point?
CATRIONA: I think on eight when she two-putted, although I missed my birdie putt, I thought she would birdie to get level. Really, it wasn’t until the last three holes, after 16, where I felt I had it won. You never know on this course, you can have some bogeys. But yes, by 17 I knew I had it won.
Q. Do you know if it’s a boy or a girl?
Q. How important was your local caddie? And how were the spectators?
CATRIONA: I thought the spectators were great. They looked as though they knew golf. They were very respectful and nice and clapped at my shots. My caddie plays here all the time. He helped me on the greens. They were quite grainy. I would have missed a few putts if he hadn’t been there. He was a great help.
Par 144 (2 x 72)
138 Catriona Matthew (Scotland) 69 69 ($100,00).
143 Kristy McPherson (US) 71 72 ($75,000).
147 Angela Park (Brazil) 72 75 ($40,000).
148 Laura Diaz (US) 75 73 ($35,000).
149 Allison Fouoch (US) 74 75, Jimin Kang (South Korea) 76 73 ($31,250 each).
150 Carin Koch (Sweden) 75 75, Louise Friberg (Sweden) 78 72 ($26,250 each).
152 Candy Hanneman (Brazil) 74 78, Kristina Kim (US) 75 77, Leta Lindley (US) 81 71 ($20,000 each).
153 Eun-Hee Ji (South Korea) 75 78, Karen Stupples (England) 78 75 ($15,500 each).
155 Jill McGill (US) 75 80 ($14,000), Patricia Carvalho (Brazil) (amateur) 79 76.