|Birdie Kim of South Korea waves to the gallery after winning the US Women's Open|
South Korean golfer Birdie Kim has won the U.S. Women's Open title with a stunning shot on the final hole to secure a two-shot victory at the Cherry Hills Country Club outside of Denver, Colorado.
The 23-year-old Korean punched the ball out of a sand trap and into the hole 18 meters away, completing a final-round one-over par 72 to finish at three-over par 287. Birdie Kim said she never imagined her shot would go in the hole.
"I don't think I'll make [the putt] I just tried to get close. If I try my best to make par, maybe I can. Or make a bogey, still I have a chance. I just try to par and get close to hole," she said.
Kim had been tied with amateur Morgan Pressel, with one hole to play. But Pressel bogeyed to finish second with another amateur, fellow-American Brittany Lang. Joint overnight leaders Michelle Wie of the United States and Britain's Karen Stupples both fell apart in the final round, carding 82 and 78 respectively. Birdie Kim was asked if she ever dreamed of winning the U.S. Open.
"Never. After yesterday's round I thought I could make the top-10. I never thought about winning this tournament," she added.
Kim is the third South Korean to win a major women's golf tournament, following Grace Park and Se Ri Pak. World number one Annika Sorenstam of Sweden ended nine shots behind in her bid for a third Grand Slam victory this season. No player (male or female) has ever won all four majors in a single season.