A Lim Kim made the most of her U.S. Women’s Open debut, closing with three straight birdies to shock the field and win the final golf major of 2020 in stunning fashion.
The 25-year-old has two wins on the Korean LPGA Tour but was largely an unknown in the U.S. entering the week, making her first-ever appearance in an LPGA major. She teed off as a +12500 longshot according to oddsmakers at PointsBet Sportsbook and those chances improved only slightly as weather pushed the tournament’s conclusion in Houston to Monday, as Kim stood at 1 over and five shots behind leader Hinako Shibuno. With the top leaders yet to begin the final round, Kim was still listed at +6600 when play resumed Monday morning at Champions Golf Club.
But Kim closed in style, shooting a 4-under 67 to tie the low round of the week including birdies on each of her final three holes while wearing a mask during competition. A 15-footer on the 18th green proved to be decisive, as she finished the week at 3 under and one shot clear of Amy Olson and world No. 1 Jin Young Ko. The five-shot deficit tied the largest ever overcome in the final round of a U.S. Women’s Open, and Kim became the first player to do so en route to victory since Annika Sorenstam in 1995.
Shibuno began the day with a one-shot lead and was listed as a +160 betting favorite, but she finished fourth after a final-round 74. Olson was alone in second to start the day and teed off Monday at +280 odds, while Ko entered the day at +2200 after starting the week behind only four players among the pre-tournament favorites. Originally scheduled for June, the tournament was postponed because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
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