Karrie Webb Wins 6th ANZ Ladies Masters

Sunday, February 11th 2007, 2:27 pm
By: News On 6

GOLD COAST, Australia (AP) _ After two days of nearly flawless golf, Karrie Webb stumbled late but held on Sunday to win her sixth ANZ Australian Ladies Masters.

She had a comfortable four-stroke lead through much of the back nine at Royal Pines before bogeying the 17th and 18th holes for a 4-under 68 and a two-stroke victory over Shin Ji-yai of South Korea.

Webb, who came from seven strokes behind Saturday with a course-record, 10-under 62 to share the third-round lead with fellow Australian Michelle Ellis, again made clutch putts to follow up last week's six-stroke Australian Open win.

With two victories in two starts in Australia, Webb begins play on the LPGA Tour in the SBS Open at Turtle Bay, Hawaii beginning Thursday. She had a 5 a.m flight Monday out of nearby Brisbane to Honolulu for her first of two tournaments there.

``It's obviously been a great start to the year,'' said Webb. ``I take a lot of positives, a lot of confidence into the next two weeks in Hawaii.''

Webb said her strong start Sunday _ a 6-under 31 on the front nine, including an eagle on the ninth _ was the key to her victory.

``Yesterday's round put me in good stead to win and I got off to a flyer today,'' said Webb, who had a four-round total of 19-under 269.

``I played obviously a very strong front nine and did what I had to do on the back. It wasn't anything special on the back but I just did what I needed to do to win.''

Shin closed with a 69 Sunday and was followed another stroke back by Cristie Kerr of the United States, who had a 68. Kerr had all four rounds in the 60s and did not make a bogey in 72 holes at Royal Pines this week.

``That's a first for me,'' Kerr said of her bogey-free performance.

Ahn Sun-ju of South Korea, who led after each of the first two rounds, birdied the last for a 70 and finished fourth. Taiwan's Tseng Ya-ni, a former amateur playing in only her second professional tournament, had a 66 to finish fifth.

Webb took a four-stroke lead on the ninth hole with her 20-foot eagle putt that all but finished off her pursuers.

She lost a stroke in unusual circumstances on the 10th hole after picking up her ball and cleaning it when she thought it was on the green. After she realized her mistake, she called over rules official Graham Nightingale and gave herself a one-stroke penalty.

``The cut between the green and the fringe ... you can hardly tell at all,'' said Webb. ``When I got around to look on the other side of the hole I could clearly see that I was sitting on the darker cut and not on the green. It's just a really silly thing to happen.''

The bogey _ Webb's first in 33 holes _ reduced her lead to three over Shin, and Webb made a testing four-footer for par on the next hole. But Webb's lead went back to four moments later when Shin bogeyed after putting her tee shot in the bunker on the par-3 11th.