By Ron Sirak
From the November 5 issue of Golf World Monday:
The long wait appears to be over. With her fourth victory of the year yesterday at the Mizuno Classic in Japan, Stacy Lewis virtually wrapped up the points race for LPGA Rolex Player of the Year.
If her 58-point lead over Inbee Park holds, Lewis would become the first American since Beth Daniel in 1994 to capture the honor. The tour plays the Lorena Ochoa Invitational in Mexico this week and concludes with the CME Group Titleholders in Naples, Fla., next week.
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Since Daniel, the POY has come from Sweden (Annika Sorenstam, eight times), Mexico (Lorena Ochoa, four), Australia and Taiwan (Karrie Webb and Yani Tseng, twice each) and England (Laura Davies, once).
Park, of South Korea, would need to win both of the last two events while Lewis finishes no better than 10th in either. Oddly, given their recent domination of the LPGA, no Korean has ever been LPGA Player of the Year.
From 1966, when Kathy Whitworth won the first LPGA POY, until Daniel in 1994, the only non-American to capture the award was Japan's Ayako Okamoto in 1987.