Georgia Hall dominated in Saudi, a win on home soil for Norris and a back-to-back for Burns on the PGA Tour.

England’s Georgia Hall recorded a sensational five-shot victory with a winning score of 11-under-par at the Aramco Saudi Ladies International presented by Public Investment Fund.

In the second event of the Ladies European Tour (LET) season, Hall produced a consistent week at Royal Greens carding rounds of 69 (-3), 69 (-3), 68 (-4) and 71 (-1) to finish at the top of the leaderboard and add her second LET title alongside her 2018 AIG Women’s Open victory.  

Talking about her win, Hall said:

“The front nine is a little bit easier, a little bit less wind than we've had. I tried to take advantage and hit some really good shots on the front nine to get me further ahead, and that kind of settled me.

“I was happy with the shots I hit on 15 and 16. It was windier than yesterday and 15 and 16 can be very tricky, so I tried to damage limitation there. I was really happy with the birdie on 17.”

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After rolling in her final putt, Hall was congratulated by fellow European Solheim Cup star Emily Kristine Pedersen with the duo crying happy tears.

“To lead all week is very special. I think the first round really was very important for me. I played incredible that round. It really set me up for the rest of the week,” she continued.

“Sometimes it's not always easy with a five-shot lead into the last day, it's a little bit more pressure on you, but I was really happy with the way I conducted myself today.

“It's fantastic to win in March early in the season. I really love this place and love the golf course. I was fine after 18, and Emily started crying, and it made me cry, I was just really proud of the way I played today.”

Sweden’s Johanna Gustavsson and Czech rookie Kristyna Napoleaova finished in a tie for second place on six-under-par – five shots behind winner Hall.

It has been an amazing week for Napoleaova, who was a former footballer for AC Sparta and only began playing golf in the summer of 2016.

The 25-year-old said:

“It's like a dream. I didn't expect even to get into the event and what happened this week, I feel is like a fairy tale.

“It was an absolutely incredible week. I'm so grateful to be here. I can't wait to come back again. I think everyone wants to win and I hope one day any time soon it will come for me too.”

Denmark’s Pedersen, who won this event in 2020 after a play-off with Hall, finished in fourth place on five-under-par, while Spain’s Carlota Ciganda was one shot further back in fifth.

In other news…

Kelly Whaley
Kellye Whaley sets LET record - image credit Ladies European Tour

American Kelly Whaley produced a spectacular final day performance equalling the course record of 63 (-9) and setting an LET tournament record of eight consecutive birdies.

The 24-year-old catapulted herself up the final leaderboard as she finished in a tie for sixth place on three-under-par.

Whaley – who turned pro in 2019, currently on the Epson Tour and competing in her first ever event outside America said:

“It is the best round I've ever had in a tournament. My whole goal today was to just enjoy it and have fun, being my first international professional event. I've never had eight birdies in a row. That's something memorable for anyone!

“You almost blackout when you do that, but I kept telling myself one after one until you're done. It's a long day, and it's a lot of holes. Once I made about four or five birdies, I said, ‘okay, you're in it now. You can't stop.’

“It was just giving myself opportunities and it was a lot of fun. I think in these situations pressure can get to you, and it becomes almost daunting, but I really approached today trying to just enjoy every shot and find something about every hole that I loved.”

Whaley, who is the daughter of former PGA of America President, Suzy Whaley, finished alongside Australia’s Steph Kyriacou, who also holds the course record, and three-time Major winner Anna Nordqvist.

In the 2022 Race to Costa del Sol, Hall sits alongside Esther Henseleit at the top of the standings with 500 points each while Sweden’s Gustavsson has jumped up to third place with 353.75 points from the first two events.

The LET now moves to South Africa for the Joburg Ladies Open.

First win for Norris

Talking of South Africa, South African Shaun Norris won his first DP World Tour title on home soil after overcoming a tricky final round at the Steyn City Championship.

Norris took a four-shot lead into the final round but bogeys early on looked to stall his title hopes. He maintained his composure and with a birdie on the penultimate hole, whilst his nearest challenger Dean Burmester had a double bogey, the 39-year-old went on to secure a three-stroke victory at 25-under-par.

After his victory Norris said:

"I stayed patient and kept my head, and eventually things fell into place," an emotional Norris told reporters. "I was hitting the ball nicely and I gave myself chances. Things started going my way.

"I don't think words can describe how I feel right now. It's been a tough journey and having my brother on the bag, my wife here, my little girl - splendid, I can't explain. It's absolutely beautiful doing this in front of my home crowd and in front of my family."

This week the DP World and PGA Tours come together for the World Golf Championship - Dell Technologies Match Play which was won last year by Billy Horschel.

Fatima Fernandez Cano secures second Epson Tour title

Fatima Fernandez Cano
Fatima Fernandez Cano - image credit Ben Harpring / Epson Tour

Not even a pop-up thunderstorm forcing a 30-minute weather delay could slow Fatima Fernandez Cano in the final round of the Carlisle Arizona Women’s Golf Classic at Longbow Golf Club. The Spaniard shot a two-under-par 70 on Sunday to capture her second Epson Tour title by three shots at 17-under-par.

Fernandez Cano, an Epson Tour ambassador said:

“It’s super sweet. I came into this tournament as a preparation to continue my LPGA career. We had a long break and it just felt right, I always love Arizona and Carlisle puts on a first-class event.

“I was very close a few times last year. I was able to get my LPGA card but never quite got that win.“To come out here, first event and getting it done is actually very sweet.”

A two-time Epson Tour graduate in 2020 and 2021, Fernandez Cano finished second on the Race for the Card money list both seasons to secure LPGA Tour membership. She made 19 cuts across 20 starts with 10 top-10 results a year ago on the “Road to the LPGA.”

The next Epson Tour event is the IOA Championship Presented by Morongo Casino Resort & Spa.

Burns goes back-to-back

Sam Burns won his third PGA Tour title in 12 months on the second play-off hole at the Valspar Championship. The win saw him defend the title and join Paul Casey as the only other player to win back-to-back Valspar Championships.

Davis Riley, a PGA Tour rookie, had held a two shot lead heading into the final round but a triple-bogey eight on the fifth hole, meant he had to dig deep to keep himself in contention from the chasing pack which included Burns and Justin Thomas.

A birdie for Riley and a bogey from Burns on the 17th meant that both players finished on 17-under-par to force a play-off.

Both players parred the 18th and on the second play-off hole, the 16th, Burns holed a long-range birdie putt from the fringe to take victory.

The win will see the 25-year-old American move into the world top 10 for the first time in his career. Great preparation just three weeks until The Masters.

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