Davies closes with a 68 to catch and pass Webb

Updated: February 23, 2003, 3:47 PM ET
Associated Press

GOLD COAST, Australia -- England's Laura Davies wasn't embarrassed by this finish.

Laura Davies
Laura Davies pumps her fist into the air after making the title-clinching 12-foot par putt on the 18th Sunday.

Davies won her third ANZ Ladies Masters title Sunday, taking advantage of Karrie Webb's final-hole bogey for a one-stroke victory.

Davies holed a 12-foot par putt on No. 18 for a 4-under 68 and a 13-under 203 total in the rain-shortened tournament. Davies also won in 1993 and '94 and has 65 international victories.

''I beat Karrie in Australia, and ultimately, that's a tough nut to crack,'' said Davies, who will play against Webb again next week in the Australian Open at Terrey Hills in Sydney.

''Six months ago, I would have been worried about making a fool of myself in front of a huge gallery, but now I'm playing like I know I can.''

Webb, second the last two years after winning the Royal Pines event four consecutive years, shot a 70 to tie for second with fellow Australian Rebecca Stevenson (68).

''I played a little loose on the back nine. I wasn't hitting my irons as close as I would have liked,'' said Webb, who lost a playoff to Annika Sorenstam last year. ''But Laura made some good putts when she needed to and played great.''

Webb's drive on the 18th hole went into deep rough and she had to pitch out to the fairway. After an approach to about 30 feet, she two-putted for bogey moments before Davies calmly rolled her par putt into the center of the cup.

Davies punched her hands into the air even before the ball fell, and wrapped her arms around caddie Terry Mundy.

''I let him read that one, and he did it perfectly,'' she said.

Young Mexican star Lorena Ochoa closed with a 68 to finish fourth at 11-under 205. Denmark's Iben Tinning (66) and Australia's Rachel Teske (67) followed at 10 under.

The long-hitting Davies has at least one international victory in each of the last 19 seasons. Last year, she won the European tour's Norwegian Masters in October.

''I got this year out of the way early,'' Davies said.


Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press

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