|Lee-Anne Pace won the Sanya Ladies Open for the second time with a birdie on the first play-off hole, the par-4 18th at Yalong Bay Golf Club
Final round interviews from the Sanya Ladies Open
Lee-Anne Pace (South Africa) - winner
Tell us about your game?
I started off a bit shaky today. I hit a few loose shots in the beginning and then I birdied immediately afterwards which was good, I got it back, then she made a birdie so I was two behind and hit it to a metre and a half on that fifth hole. It was a tough shot, a hybrid, but I missed the putt so I was still two behind. I made two birdies in a row and I just started playing really well.
In the final stages, on 17, you had a bogey there, so what was going through your mind?
I had a really sandy lie and I thought it was just a normal shot, nine-iron down the left side and it seemed to get away from me down the right so a tricky putt and I three-putted that. I guess I needed that two-putt to seal the deal but in the end I did it anyway.
On your second shot into 18 in regulation, were you nervous?
I was a bit uneasy about the lie. It was sitting down and a bit sandy so I wasn’t sure how the ball was going to come out and it didn’t come out really well! I don’t think I was nervous. I started to get really pumped up towards the end and all the feelings came back from 2010 when I won here and I made a birdie on 16 in 2010 so I was really pumped up to go. Unfortunately I three putted 17 but it was good enough to win.
In the play-off you must have been delighted with the perfect putt that just fell in.
It was downhill, down grain, about a cup left and Brutal, my caddie, said to me, ‘You’ve got to feel this one in,’ and I did. I made a good stroke so I’m really happy it went in.
What length of putt?
Close to 20 feet from right at the back of the green.
How does it feel to win here again?
Amazing. I love it here. It’s a really nice feeling to come back and win here again.
Yu Yang Zhang (China) - second
It’s a pity because in the play-off I hit my driver well and the second shot was good. Just the putting missed by a little bit. She’s a great player so it’s okay.
How do you feel with the fans?
This is in China so I feel at home and everybody was so nice and supported me so I feel really good.
I don’t play Suzhou because I play Japan for the Q School.
Ye Na Chung (Korea) - third
One stroke. I’m so sad. Today my shots didn’t feel good so I can’t hit fairways and greens and so I think that’s a pretty good result. I had many sand saves. Next week I know the course so I will do my best. I played in Suzhou two years ago.
I saw the 17th hole leader board but I had one more hole so I was trying to make a birdie but my second shot went into the bunker. I wanted it to go in because I had confidence with my bunker shots but in the end I made a par.
Jia Yun Li (China) - tied sixth
To what do you attribute this round?
Everything was really good. The irons were good and the putting was good so everything went into the hole.
Did it feel easy?
I think because I teed off yesterday morning, today the wind did not feel very strong so it felt easier than yesterday.
Is this your best ever round?
You dropped just one shot?
One bogey on 16 and 10 birdies.
Best part of your game?
I think it was the putter. 24 putts. I hit the shots close to the hole and made all the putts. I holed two long putts: one at hole five, from 10 yards uphill and one at hole 10, uphill from eight yards.
Is this your best finish in this tournament?
I think the first year I finished well, like 12th, but the scores were not as good.
How do you assess your rookie year on the LET?
Europe is far from China so we’ve travelled a lot to try and get more competition. According to our visa, we couldn’t attend all of the European tournaments but I think I have improved a lot on the European Tour because we have been to more tournaments competing with better players. It’s a lot of travelling and jet lag.
Where do you live?
Guangzhou, a one hour flight from here.