Shanshan Feng dominates to win in Dubai

Chinese golfer takes the title in Dubai.
Shanshan Feng. Getty Images
Shanshan Feng. Getty Images

DUBAI // Shanshan Feng decided to keep her victory speech at the Omega Dubai Ladies Masters short and sweet, because she was worried that those in attendance were getting sick of the sight of her.

To be fair, she had hogged the limelight for much of the week.

Such had been the Chinese star’s dominance, that she was constantly in front of cameras and microphones, discussing a lead she never relinquished.

Routine, though, did not render her feat in any way unremarkable.

In fact, Feng’s record at Emirates Golf Club is anything but.

Her five-stroke triumph, never really in doubt from the moment she began her final round on Saturday with the same margin over the rest of the field, sealed a second wire-to-wire win in three years.

Carlota Ciganda, the runner-up, was a distant second.

Second was a recurring theme, for as a freshly crowned, two-time champion in Dubai, Feng joins some pretty illustrious company.

Not that she realised it.

“The staff just told me I’m actually one of two people who have won twice here,” she said. “The other is Annika, so that makes me feel really proud of myself.”

Comparisons to Annika Sorenstam are always welcome.

Bettering the person widely considered the greatest female golfer in history would be even sweeter.

“I don’t know if Annika is going to come anymore, but I’m going to keep coming,” Feng said.

“So, maybe I have a chance to be the only one with three.”

At one point, Feng seemed poised to break another record.

The event’s 72-hole record stands at 21 under, and the world No 5 climbed to within one shot of that mark before eventually dropping a stroke and finishing at 19 under.

It did not disappoint too much, though, given that it was Feng who set the scoring record, in 2012.

Despite her mastery of the Majlis, Feng actually began the event with next-to-no expectations, since she was struck down by food poisoning on Monday, leaving her energy levels worryingly low.

Yet she concluded the week with a healthy dose of optimism.

“People keep asking me that same question,” said Feng about her chances of becoming world No 1 next season.

“I don’t really like to set goals with numbers, but to finish the season with a win makes me really happy. I feel really comfortable going into 2015.”

She still had work to do in 2014.

A self-confessed shopaholic, Feng planned to hit the mall last night, armed with some of the €75,000 (Dh343,264) she had just collected.

“I just got a big cheque,” she said. “So I think I’m able to get something.”

jmcauley@thenational.ae

Follow us on twitter at @SprtNationalUAE

Published: December 13, 2014 04:00 AM

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