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Walton Heath 2023

Sustained success


Ten AIG Women's Open wins for Asian players since 2000

Hinako Shibuno on day one of the AIG Women

Golfers from England and America dominated the winner’s circle in the early days of the AIG Women’s Open – but players from Asia have enjoyed the most success since the turn of the century.

Japan’s Ayako Okamoto broke new ground in 1984 when she became the first Asian golfer to win the Championship.

It would be another 17 years until a player from the same continent would follow suit, as South Korea’s Se Ri Pak triumphed at Sunningdale in 2001.

That victory laid the foundations for two decades of glory. Indeed, 26 of the last 53 majors have been won by Asian players.

Here we take a brief look at each of the Asian successes in the AIG Women's Open:

Hinako Shibuno celebrates her AIG Women's Open victory in 2019

2019: Hinako Shibuno (Japan)

Hinako Shibuno provided a fairytale finish to the AIG Women’s Open in 2019 by claiming her maiden major title in her first tournament outside her native Japan.

‘The Smiling Cinderella’ landed five birdies in the final nine holes to card a winning score of 18-under-par, one clear of Lizette Salas.

Shibuno became the second Japanese player to win the Championship after Okamoto in ’84.

In Kyung Kim kisses the AIG Women's Open trophy after her victory in 2017

2017: In-Kyung Kim (South Korea)

In Kyung Kim had posted 12 top-10 finishes in majors before finally breaking her duck at Kingsbarns in 2017.

Her 54-hole score of 199 broke the Championship record of 200, set by Ariya Jutanugarn a year before.

Ariya Jutanugarn in 2016 with the AIG Women's Open trophy

2016: Ariya Jutanugarn (Thailand)

Ariya Jutanugarn was the first Thai golfer, male or female, to claim a major championship.

She won in 2016 by a three-stroke margin from South Korea’s Mirim Lee.

Jutanugarn went on to win the US Women’s Open in 2018 and has registered 13 top-10 finishes in majors since 2016.

Inbee Park of South Korea tees off on the eighteenth hole during Day Three of the AIG Women's Open at Muirfield

2015: Inbee Park (South Korea)

Inbee Park has enjoyed a trophy-laden career, with 21 victories on the LPGA Tour – a haul which includes a phenomenal seven majors.

Park won the Women’s PGA Championship three years in succession from 2013 to 2015, the US Women’s Open twice, and the Chevron Championship and the AIG Women’s Open once.

Her AIG Women’s Open triumph came at Turnberry in 2015.

Park also won gold at the Rio Olympics in 2016.


2012: Jiyai Shin (South Korea)

One of only five players to have won the AIG Women's Open more than once, Shin triumphed by an incredible nine shots at Royal Liverpool in 2012 - the largest margin of victory since the Championship became a major.

Yani Tseng

2011: Yani Tseng (Chinese Taipei)

Yani Tseng is one of only three players to win the AIG Women's Open in consecutive years.

Tseng dominated world golf for a period, winning five majors in a four-year stretch and spending 108 consecutive weeks as the world number one between 2011 and 2013.


2010: Yani Tseng (Chinese Taipei)

Tseng picked up her first AIG Women's Open crown by going wire-to-wire at Royal Birkdale in 2010, holding off Katherine Kirk to win by one stroke.

Jiyai Shin

2008: Jiyai Shin (South Korea)

Shin started and finished with scores of 66 to claim her first major title, by three shots from Yani Tseng. She was only 20 years and 97 days old at the time and remains the youngest winner of the AIG Women's Open.


2005: Jeong Jang (South Korea)

Rounds of 68 and 66 saw Jeong Jang open up a four-shot lead at the halfway stage at Royal Birkdale in 2005, and she held her nerve to finish four clear of Sophie Gustafson with a final tally of 16-under-par.

Jang had already posted four top-10 finishes in majors but this was her maiden victory as a professional.


2001: Se Ri Pak (South Korea)

A true star of the women’s game, Se Ri Pak was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2007.

Pak won five majors and 25 titles on the LPGA Tour in an unprecedented career.

Her AIG Women’s Open victory came at Sunningdale in 2001 when a sensational final-round 66 helped her storm through the field and win by two strokes over her compatriot Mi Hyun Kim.


1984: Ayako Okamoto (Japan)

Okamoto made history on two fronts at Woburn in 1984.

She became the first Asian player to win the AIG Women’s Open, paving the way for the glut of victories in the 2000s.

Okamoto also clinched the title by a huge 11 strokes; no player in history has won the Championship by a bigger margin.

After recording more than 60 professional wins, she was, like Pak, deservedly inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame.