Thai teenager Atthaya Thitikul has become the first LPGA Tour rookie in five years to win twice in one season after she defeated Danielle Kang in a sudden-death playoff at the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship held at Pinnacle Country Club.
Kang holed out for eagle on the 18th hole in regulation to take the clubhouse lead at 17 under. Thitikul matched her total with a birdie on the penultimate hole and signed for a closing 68, following up a 10-under-par 62 on Saturday. Thitikul won the play-off with a birdie at the second extra hole.
Victory saw the 19-year-old extend her lead in the LPGA Tour’s Rookie of the Year race over South Korea’s Hye-Jin Choi. Her first LPGA Tour success came at the JTBC Classic in March, where she also won in a play-off.
Last season, Thitikul won the LET’s Race to Costa del Sol, Rookie of the Year and Player of the Year award, joining Laura Davies, Carlota Ciganda and Esther Henseleit as the only players to win the latter two honours in the same season.
Atthaya Thitikul WITB
DRIVER: Callaway Rogue ST Triple Diamond (9°)
FAIRWAY WOOD: Callaway Rogue ST LS (15°)
HYBRIDS: Callaway Apex UW (19°), Callaway Apex 4H (21°)
IRONS: Callaway Apex Pro (5-PW)
WEDGES: Callaway Jaws Forged (48°, 52°, 58°)
PUTTER: Odyssey Toulon Atlanta
BALL: Callaway Chrome Soft X