US LPGA beats Japan in Nichirei International

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The Independent Online

The US LPGA overcame strong resistance by the Japanese team on Sunday to win the $702,000 Nichirei International women's golf championship in Narita, Japan.

The US LPGA overcame strong resistance by the Japanese team on Sunday to win the $702,000 Nichirei International women's golf championship in Narita, Japan.

The US LPGA, which earned a 9-3 lead on Saturday, beat their Japanese competitors 6.5 to 5.5 in Sunday's 12 individual stroke-play matches for a 15.5-8.5 win in the three-day contest at the 6,405 yard, par-72 Soei Country Club in Chiba prefecture (state).

It was the 15th year in a row that the US team won the championship.

Liselotte Neumann and rookie-of-the-year Kim Mi-Hyun both fired 69's to earn the US side two of its six wins. Hiromi Kobayashi hit the day's lowest score of 68 as the hosts grabbed five wins and tied one match, their best performance this week.

Kobayashi played for the US LPGA in the 1998 event.

En route to a three-stroke victory, Neumann was neck-and-neck with Japan captain Fumiko Muraguchi after 13 holes but shot ahead with two birdies on the next three holes.

US captain Lorie Kane lost 69-75 to Fuki Kido.

In a competition between two players hailing from South Korea, rookie Kim beat Japan LPGA tour veteran Ku Ok-Hee 69-74, firing five birdies and two bogeys.

Kobayashi beat Cindy McCurdy by eight strokes.

The US LPGA victory brought the team $450,000.

Final results Sunday in the Nichirei International women's golf championship on the 6,405 yard, par 72 Sosei Country Club in Chiba Prefecture (state) (each winner receives one point, ties earn 0.5 points for each team):singles

United States 6.5, Japan 5.5

Total: United States, 15.5, 8.5.

Laura Davies (United Kingdom), United States, halved with Kaori Higo, Japan 71-71.Aki Nakano, Japan, beat Mardi Lunn (Australia), United States, 74-79.Liselotte Neumann, United States, beat Fumiko Muraguchi, Japan 69-72.Tina Barrett, United States, beat Junko Yasui, Japan, 70-74.Fuki Kido, Japan, beat Lorie Kane (Canada), United States, 69-75.Rosie Jones, United States, beat Yuri Fudo, Japan, 72-73.Sherri Steinhauer, United States, beat Han Hee Won, Japan, 73-74.Aki Takamura, Japan, beat Janice Moodie (Scottland), United States, 73-76.Midori Yoneyama, Japan, beat Nancy Scranton, United States, 74-77.Kim Mi Hyun (South Korea), United States, beat Ku Ok Hee (South Korea), Japan, 69-74.Rachel Hetherington (Australia), beat Akiko Fukushima, Japan, 74-75.Hiromi Kobayashi, Japan, beat Cindy McCurdy, United States, 68, 76.

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