In an astonishing final round, Japan’s Ayaka Furue passed Saturday’s leaders, Celine Boutier and Lydia Ko, to win the Trust Golf Women’s Scottish Open. Finishing at 21 under par, Furue scored a 62 on Sunday, setting a new course record for Dundonald Links and snatching her first LPGA title. 

After last weekend’s 5-way tie for third, there was no dearth of favorites in this strong, international field. The Women’s Scottish Open is one of the multiple LPGA events to increase its purse this season, from $1.5 Million to this year’s $2 Million. Furue herself took home $300,000 with her win. 

Players got a dramatic shift in climate coming out of last weekend’s Evian Championship in France, where Brooke Henderson birdied the 72nd hole to win by 1. Links golf generally presents a challenge, but players were also hit with the chill of a Scottish summer after playing in 90-degree temperatures all through last weekend.

“Compared to last week, it is night and day. Maybe there’s something to be said that some players play better in different elements,” said Ryann O’Toole, the weekend’s defending champion. 

O’Toole, who has already had 2 top 10 finishes this season, was hoping lightning would strike twice for the title but failed to make the cut. Last year’s Women’s Scottish Open was O’Toole’s first career win on the LPGA Tour. 

Although this is the second year for champions making their first career wins at the women’s Scottish Open, the win came ten years earlier in Furue’s career. The 22-year-old was a 7-time winner on the JLPGA before joining the tour.

“I’m very happy. I was four shots back. I thought it would be difficult to catch the top, good players. But I’m very happy I played good golf and I was able to come out as a winner,” said Furue after her Sunday win.

Ko assesses a shot during Saturday's round

Dundonald Links opened in 1911. In 2003, Loch Lomond Golf Club purchased the property and began renovation. With the help of course architect Kyle Phillips, Dundonald became a sister course for Loch Lomond members that wanted to head south down the western coast of Scotland. 

Now with their newly renovated clubhouse and a number of new cottages, the course is branded as a luxury golf resort to match nearby Royal Troon and Turnbury. Starting next year, Dundonald will be one of four qualifying courses for the Open Championship, alongside West Lancashire, Burnham & Berrow, and Royal Cinque Ports.

The course itself is framed on the horizon by the Atlantic Ocean and an occasional passing train. Clearer conditions on Saturday gave Boutier an open opportunity to jump ahead. 

“It was a very solid day. I started the front pretty solid and that helped me relax a little bit,” Boutier said. This would be her third career win and first of the season.

With Furue’s win, she’s beaten 7 of the world’s top 10 players. Among them was Lydia Ko, who held the lead for Friday and Saturday’s rounds but ended the weekend tied for fifth.

Ko said, “I feel like I wasn’t able to get things going over this weekend. Never really got off to a good momentum.”

Next weekend, the LPGA Tour is heading to Muirfield for the AIG Women’s Open, which has a $6.8 Million purse.

Bailey Shelton

Bailey Shelton is the Managing Editor and Lead Graphic Designer for Stick & Hack. She graduated from Ball State University with a degree in Journalism News and Telecommunications. Aside from her work with Stick & Hack, she has been published in NUVO and St. Louis Magazine. She also recently released a short collection of personal essays called "Home".