MIKI, Hyogo Pref. (Kyodo) Chie Arimura defeated South Korea’s Park In Bee with a par on the first playoff hole at the Studio Alice Ladies Open on Sunday.
Arimura picked up her first win of the season and seventh of her career while sending the 2008 U.S. Women’s Open champion to her third runner-up finish in three starts on the JLPGA Tour this year.
On the first extra hole — the 405-yard, par-4 18th, the 22-year-old Arimura sank her winning putt from three feet after Park missed the green with her second shot and ended up with a bogey.
The two players shot 2-under 70s to complete 54 holes of regulation play tied at 5-under 211 at Hanayashiki Golf Club in Hyogo Prefecture.
“This is the first time I’ve won a close contest. I’m glad I holed my final putt under intense pressure. I feel a sense of growth as a player,” said Arimura, who won five times and finished third on the money list in 2009.
“Last year, Sakura (Yokomine) won this tournament in a playoff and went on to claim the money title. So I hope to repeat that scenario,” she said.
Monday qualifier Kaori Nakamura earned a surprise third-place finish at 2 under after a 71.
U.S. LPGA star Ai Miyazato had a 70 to share fourth a shot further back with Ahn Sun Ju (68) and Song Bo Bae (72).
Earlier in the week, Yokomine withdrew from the tournament for health reasons after slumping to a 78 in the opening round.