(ATTN: ADDS comments in paras 5-7, new photos)
SEOUL, May 2 (Yonhap) -- South Korean Kim Hyo-joo earned her fourth LPGA victory in Singapore on Sunday, marking her first LPGA win in over five years.
The 26-year-old golfer captured the HSBC Women's World Championship title at 17-under 271 to beat Hannah Green of Australia by one stroke, with an eight-under 64 in the final round at Sentosa Golf Club's New Tanjong Course.
She takes home US$240,000 in the first-place check.
Kim last won an LPGA tournament in 2016 at the Pure Silk Bahamas LPGA Classic. Before that, she won the Evian Championship in 2014 and the Founders Cup in 2015.
"Winning after such a long time, it feels like my first win of all," she said in a press conference. "It feels like a dream at this moment."
Last year, Kim played only on the Korea Ladies Professional Golf Association (KLPGA) Tour out of fears over COVID-19. She hoisted two KLPGA trophies and topped the money list.
"My goal this year was to get a win, and I'm glad I already achieved that," she said. "While I was playing on the KLPGA Tour last year, I honed my skills and wanted to adapt them to this year on the LPGA, and I'm very happy that these results came out."
Kim sealed a come-from-behind victory in the final round, which she entered five strokes behind then-leader Lin Xiyu from China.
She hit four birdies in the first nine holes, while Lin had one bogey and a birdie, allowing Kim to narrow the gap by one stroke.
And Kim joined the leading group with two birdies in the 11th and 12th, and took the lead for the first time on two birdies in the 14th and 15th holes.
While Kim completed her 18th hole at 17-under in total, Hannah Green pulled off an eagle in the par-four 14th hole to 18-under and topped the leaderboard.
But Green lost two strokes in the last two holes to finish at 16-under and Kim, who was waiting for Green's results at the clubhouse, became the final winner.
South Koreans Park In-bee tied at third with 15-under, Ryu So-yeon placed sixth with 12-under and Chun In-gee ranked 7th with 11-under.
Kim became the sixth Korean golfer to win the HSBC Women's World Championship. Former No. 1 Shin Ji-yai, Park In-bee, Jang Ha-na and Park Sung-hyun are former Korean champions of the tournament.
It is also the second LPGA victory this year by South Korean golfers, following by Park In-bee who won the Kia Classic in March.