Leona Maguire’s matchplay run comes to an end in semi-final defeat to Ayaka Furue

‘Overall, it’s been a good week, there has been a lot of golf this week, a lot of good golf’

Leona Maguire’s bid for a second career title on the LPGA Tour came up short on Sunday after the Co Cavan golfer’s brilliant run in the LPGA Bank of Hope Matchplay in Las Vegas came to an end when she lost to Japan’s Ayaka Furue in the semi-finals of the championship.

Furue, ranked 18th in the Rolex world rankings, one place higher than Maguire, was two down to the Irishwoman through seven holes but turned the match around when winning the ninth and 10th holes and then went ahead with a winning par on the 12th and was conceded the 15th en route to a 2 and 1 win.

“I just didn’t have my best stuff, a couple of costly bogeys on the back nine [proved crucial]. Ayaka played solid, basically played the way I played the rest of the days. She didn’t really do anything wrong. I just didn’t hole the putts when I needed to. Overall, it’s been a good week, there has been a lot of golf this week, a lot of good golf. I’ll take the positives from it,” said Maguire, who will aim to bring the momentum of a tied-third place finish on to this week’s Mizuho Americas Open in New Jersey.

Having won five matches through the group stages and then in the round of 16 and the quarter-finals, Maguire added: “I kind of put myself in a few wrong spots that I couldn’t be aggressive, had to play safe. I couldn’t really attack from there. I was kind of trying to play for pars instead of giving myself birdie chances.”

Philip Reid

Philip Reid

Philip Reid is Golf Correspondent of The Irish Times