South Korea’s Ko Jin-young became the first player to retain the HSBC Women’s World Championship with a two-shot victory in Singapore.

The world number five, who is still struggling with a wrist injury that badly affected her 2022 season, hit a three-under-par 69 to win on 17 under.

Nelly Korda, ranked second in the world, also shot a 69 to finish second.

Fellow Americans Danielle Kang (68) and Allisen Corpuz (69) were joint third on 14 under with Japan’s Ayaka Furue (67).

Ko, who shot successive 65s in rounds two and three, took a two-shot lead into the final round at Sentosa Country Club and birdied the first to extend her advantage and knocked in another on the fifth.

Korda had three successive birdies from the third hole to close to within one but a bogey on the sixth halted her momentum and when Ko birdied the eighth, her lead was back to three.

She then recovered from a bogey at the 11th with a birdie at the par-five 13th – a hole Korda bogeyed – and finished with five pars to close out a fine win.

The former world number one burst into tears after securing the $270,000 (£224,000) first prize.

« It’s a great honour to defend this title and I had a great week, and a long week as well, with all the rain, » she said.

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