On the way up Down Under

Yani Tseng was victorious again at the Women’s Australian Open at the Commonwealth Golf Club in Melbourne Feb. 6, 2011.

Yani Tseng has moved up three spots in the Rolex World Rankings. She's now behind Jiyai Shin at No. 2.

MELBOURNE, Australia – Yani Tseng won for the second time this year, but you probably didn’t know that until now.

On Sunday, Tseng become the second player in history to successfully defend the Women’s Australian Open title. The Taiwanese LPGA star, winner of two majors last season, launched her 2011 campaign in style with a seven-stroke win at Commonwealth Golf Club, which marked the start of the Ladies European Tour season.

WORLD TOP 10

  1. Jiyai Shin
  2. Yani Tseng +3
  3. Cristie Kerr -1
  4. Suzann Pettersen -1
  5. Na Yeon Choi -1
  6. Ai Miyazato
  7. In Kyung Kim
  8. Sun Ju Ahn
  9. Song-Hee Kim
  10. Michelle Wie

--Updated Feb. 7

Tseng, 22, fired a final round of 2-under 71 for a four-round total of 16-under 276. Last month, Tseng quietly won the Taifong Ladies Open on the LPGA of Tawian tour.

“It feels very good to win by seven shots,” Tseng said. “I have not had that feeling before, and it feels very good. And I enjoyed the crowd on the 18th hole.”

She even wrote her acceptance speech ahead of time.

Tseng, No. 2 in the world after the win, said this will set her up for her goal to be No. 1 on the Rolex World Rankings this year.

“I just feel more confident and relaxed,” she said. “Before, I was thinking too much and trying to win. Now I know I don’t need it. I stay focused on my swing and play one shot at a time. I know I can win.”

World No. 1 Jiyai Shin (75), fellow Korean Eun Hee Ji (74) and England’s Melissa Reid (68) finished in a tie for second at 9 under.

First-round co-leader Jennifer Song of the U.S. shot a final-round 71 to finish fifth at 7 under. German Sandra Gal (73) was sixth at 6 under.

Australians Karrie Webb (70) and Katherine Hull (76) tied for seventh with American Cindy LaCrosse (74) at 5 under. Lydia Ko, a 13-year-old New Zealander, tied for 12th to lead the amateurs. Laura Davies, a two-time winner here, shot 74 and finished at 290, 14 strokes behind Tseng.

Sunday’s win marked the 12th professional title of Tseng’s young career.

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