Christina Kim Roars Back!
By Torleif Sorenson on 11/17/14

Nine long years had passed since Christina Kim won on the LPGA Tour — specifically, the end-of-season Tournament of Champions in 2005.

On Sunday, November 16, the colorful California-born star returned to the winner's circle, defeating 2012 LPGA Championship winner Shanshan Feng on the second playoff hole of the Lorena Ochoa Invitational in Mexico City.
"This is the greatest win in my life, without a doubt.

"I can't put into words how I'm feeling right now. I'm still riding so many emotions. It feels surreal. I can't explain. I'm so overwhelmed right now. I'm so proud and honored to be a champion for such an incredible tournament."
Indeed, the Lorena Ochoa Invitational is one of the most popular tournaments on the LPGA schedule, in no small part because of the popularity of the tournmanent's namesake hostess.

After her par-saving putt fell at the second playoff hole, Kim danced and jumped up and down on the green, then hugged her caddie T.J. Jones, boyfriend Duncan French, who is actually Michelle Wie's caddie, then Wie herself. In fact, reporters saw Wie wiping away tears after embracing Kim.

For her part, Feng (China's first major championship winner) was magnanimous during and after Kim's victory celebration:
"I thought other than Christina, the rest of us were competing for second place because I never thought I could catch up. So I said that my goal was that I want to get to 15 under. It doesn't matter if I win or not if I get to 15 under, I’d be really happy, which I did. So I had a really solid run.

"I kind of felt a little upset for her because she hasn't won for so long. After she made the par putt in the playoff, I lost and she won, and I saw her, you know, she jumped up and she was really happy. And I felt the same thing — I was really happy for her because she's a good player, good person. So she's supposed to play well."
Feng is absolutely correct; in August, following the death of comedian Robin Williams, we posted Kim's comments and thoughts — and noted her surging statistics and improved performance on tour. She finished T-6 at the North Texas LPGA Shootout in May, then finished solo second four weeks later at the Shoprite Classic. After a T-11 at the Yokohama Tire Classic in September and thinking about what Ochoa herself would do on the course, Kim came through with a very popular wire-to-wire win.

By the way, if you still have not read Kim's 2009 autobiography, Swinging From My Heels, we at oobgolf heartily recommend it!

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[ comments ]
homermania says:
Can't believe it's been nine years, wow.
[ post comment ]
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