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Sorenstam Sets Record With Victory

From Staff and Wire Reports

Annika Sorenstam shot a seven-under-par 65 Sunday to pull away from Cristie Kerr and easily win the LPGA Samsung World Championship.

Sorenstam finished with a 22-under 266 at Hiddenbrooke Golf Club in Vallejo, Calif., six shots ahead of Kerr, with whom she was tied after three rounds.

It was Sorenstam’s ninth victory of the season, surpassing her career best of eight, set last year.

And with the winner’s share of $162,000, she boosted her 2002 earnings to $2,374,000, well over the LPGA record of $2.105 million she set in 2001.

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She also broke the tournament record of 14 under, accomplished four times, most recently by Juli Inkster in 2000, also at Hiddenbrooke.

Kerr finished at 16 under after shooting a 71. Michele Redman eagled the last hole for a 68, finishing third at 15 under. Se Ri Pak (70) and Rosie Jones (71) tied for fourth, finishing 13 under.

Playing in the final group with Kerr, Sorenstam built a three-shot lead after the making a birdie on the first hole and never was threatened thereafter.

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Charles Howell III made a clutch up-and-down birdie on the 15th hole and beat Brandt Jobe and Scott Hoch by two shots for his first career victory in the Michelob Championship at Williamsburg, Va.

Howell, 23, parred the last two holes for a four-under 67 and won for the first time in his 68th career start with a 14-under 270.

He became the 14th first-time winner on the PGA Tour this year, tying the record set in 1991, and the sixth player to do it in this event.

It was the 22nd and final PGA Tour event on the 6,853-yard River Course, which will play host to an LPGA Tour event beginning next year.

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Hale Irwin birdied the first playoff hole to defeat Gary McCord and win the Turtle Bay Championship at Kahuku, Hawaii.

For Irwin, who had a 0-5 record in Senior PGA playoffs, it was his third consecutive win at Turtle Bay Resort. He won the event in 2000 and in 1997, when it was held on Maui and called the Kaanapali Classic.

With the victory, his fourth of the year, Irwin clinched the Charles Schwab Cup and earned the $1-million annuity.

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McCord, also a CBS analyst, closed with a three-under 69 to match Irwin at eight-under 208. Irwin finished with a 70.

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Padraig Harrington made a 12-foot birdie putt on the second playoff hole to beat Eduardo Romero and win the Dunhill Links Championship at St. Andrews, Scotland.

Harrington made a 20-foot birdie putt on the final hole of regulation for a three-under 69. Romero missed an eight-foot birdie putt at No. 18, finishing with 69 and tying Harrington at 19-under 269.

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After both players parred the first playoff hole, Romero missed a birdie putt from six feet. Harrington then made his birdie putt, clinching his first victory of the year. Harrington earned $800,000.

Colin Montgomerie birdied nine of his first 12 holes and closed with a course-record-tying nine-under 63, finishing in a tie for third with Sandy Lyle (68) and Vijay Singh (70) at 271.

Tennis

Lindsay Davenport had 15 aces, but they weren’t enough as she was upset by Magdalena Maleeva, 5-7, 6-3, 7-6 (4), in the final of the $2.2-million Kremlin Cup at Moscow.

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Davenport was playing in only her sixth tournament of 2002. She had knee surgery in January, returned in July and has reached three finals--and has yet to win.

However, by reaching the Kremlin Cup title match, Davenport did secure a spot in the season-ending WTA Championships at Staples Center on Nov. 6-11.

Maleeva added to her Kremlin Cup titles in 1994 and 1995. Ranked 23rd coming into the tournament, she defeated Venus Williams and Amelie Mauresmo en route to the final.

“I never managed to overcome three top-10 players in one event before,” said Maleeva, who won $182,000. “I’m happy, and it is definitely the best week in my career.”

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In the men’s final, Paul-Henry Mathieu won his first ATP Tour title by beating U.S. Open semifinalist Sjeng Schalken, 4-6, 6-2, 6-0.

Jill Craybas won the final six games to defeat Silvia Talaja, 2-6, 6-4, 6-4, and win the Japan Open in Tokyo.

It’s the first WTA Tour title for Craybas, the 1996 NCAA singles champion for Florida, who hadn’t advanced past the quarterfinals of a pro tournament.

Kenneth Carlsen beat Magnus Norman, 7-6, (6), 6-3, in the men’s final for his first title since 1999.

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Miscellany

Ernest Kipyego of Kenya won the Cologne Marathon in an event-record 2 hours 10 minutes 53 seconds.

Kipyego beat the previous mark of 2:10:56 set by Germany’s Carsten Eich in 1998 and finished 42 seconds ahead of runner-up Andrew Sambu of Tanzania.

Claudia Dreher became the first German woman to win the event, finishing in 2:31:30.

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