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Korda, Maguire dispute Match Play crown

ORLANDO RAMIREZ/AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE Nelly Korda finds a formidable foe in Leona Maguire in the LPGA Match Play championship final.

LOS ANGLES (AFP) — World No. 1 Nelly Korda faces a duel with Ireland’s Leona Maguire for the LPGA Match Play crown after both players powered into the final on Saturday.

Korda, chasing a fourth straight tournament victory, advanced to Sunday’s final after comfortable wins in the quarter-finals and semi-finals at Shadow Creek in Las Vegas.

The American downed compatriot Angel Yin 3&2 to reach the last four, and then overwhelmed South Korea’s An Na-Rin 4&3 in the semi-final.

Korda came into this week’s hybrid strokeplay/match play tournament in blistering form after recent wins at the Drive On Championship, Los Angeles Open and Arizona Championship.

However she faces a formidable opponent in Sunday’s final in the shape of Maguire, the Solheim Cup star with a proven track record in match play.

The 29-year-old had little difficulty in reaching the final, defeating Thailand’s Moriya Jutanugarn 4&3 in the morning session before taking care of Korea’s Kim Sei-Young 3&2 in the semi-finals.

“I love this golf course,” Maguire said. “I keep saying it’s one of my favorites we play all year. “It’s a challenge. You just have to embrace it for what it is and take every shot and just really try and execute.”

Maguire revealed she had met up with her European Solheim Cup team-mates for a dinner this week in Las Vegas.

“It was great to catch up with everyone,” Maguire said. “Ultimately I love match play. I like the competitiveness of it.”

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