Having blown a seven-shot lead, leading to a playoff last week at Shoal Creek, Ariya Jutanugarn looked like she was about to lose the U.S. Women’s Open. A shot behind Hyo Joo Kim on the second hole of the two-hole aggregate playoff, Jutanugarn was over the back of the 18th green with a delicate pitch shot that she had to knock within makable range to have any chance. She did just that, forcing the contest into sudden death.
Then, after a sand save on the first hole of sudden death extended things, Jutanugarn was back at the same 18th hole where she faced a touchy bunker shot that she expertly splashed onto the green, watching the ball roll to within a couple of feet. When Kim bogeyed, Jutanugarn tapped in for the win.
The club used for those two shots was the newly minted U.S. Women’s Open champion's Titleist Vokey SM7 60-degree wedge, which is bent to a finished loft of 59 degrees and features a raw finish. Although Jutanugarn’s 50- and 56-degree wedges are high bounce (12 and 14 degrees, respectively), her 59-degree is low bounce at just four degrees. The 35-inch shaft is True Temper’s Dynamic Gold S200 and the grip is from Iomic. On the back of the wedge, Jutanugarn has her nickname, “May” stamped numerous times. Perhaps she might consider changing that in the future to “Champ.”