In Gee Chun was justifiably proud of her performance and able to remain upbeat after being edged out by Ashleigh Buhai in a four-hole play-off at the AIG Women’s Open.
Chun missed out on a fourth major title in the most dramatic fashion imaginable. After wiping out a five-shot final-round deficit to force a sudden-death play-off with Buhai, the Korean was eventually beaten when she bogeyed the fourth extra hole and her rival produced a sensational up-and-down from a greenside bunker.
Chun, who was victorious at the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship just six weeks earlier, managed to find the positives from her superb performance at Muirfield, which delivered her best finish in the AIG Women’s Open after two previous top-10 placings.
“I think I did what I can do,” said Chun. “Ashleigh made a great up-and-down on 18 (to win the play-off).
“Almost, close, but still, I don’t want to give up and I just want to look for another tournament, another day.”
A popular and positive presence throughout the Championship, Chun roared into contention on Sunday with three front-nine birdies, cutting Buhai’s five-shot lead to one in the process as the leader reached the turn in 37.
Bogeys at the 10th and 12th left Chun three behind approaching the closing stretch, but Buhai then triple-bogeyed the par-4 15th before both players finished with three pars apiece to ensure a play-off was needed.
Tremendous drama then unfolded as Chun and Buhai then matched each other on three successive trips down the 18th hole. It was only on the fourth sudden-death hole that they were finally separated, Chun paying the price for finding a bunker off the tee.
“I made a good third shot from the fairway,” said Chun. “My putt was a little short but then she hung in there and she made a good up-and-down. That's how she made a win this week.
“I just tried to stay in the present – that was my goal before starting the final round. Then I played in the play-off, so I’m still happy. To be honest, it’s not like happy-happy, but still, I think I made a good result. I think I did a good job too.
“I'm always happy to finish in a good position. I felt like I had a great season, and I have more tournaments coming in the future.
“I think now I have a lot of confidence I can play well at a links course.”
Buhai’s slip-up at the 15th also opened the door for her playing partner, Hinako Shibuno, who ultimately missed out on the play-off by a single shot after finishing on nine-under-par.
The top six at Muirfield was completed by Leona Maguire, Minjee Lee and Madelene Sagstrom, who carded respective scores of 66, 69 and 71 to end the week seven-under.