Who's that 'good-looking guy'?

MATT RICHENS
Last updated 05:00 11/02/2013
Lydia Ko, Israel Dagg
JOSEPH JOHNSON/Getty Images

ISRAEL WHO? Israel Dagg might have caught Lydia Ko's eye yesterday, but all eyes were on Ko after she became the first Kiwi to win the New Zealand Women's Open.

Lydia Ko
Getty Images
WINNER: Lydia Ko is the NZ Women's Open champion.

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All Black and Crusader Israel Dagg is normally the one asked for pictures, but the fullback was the one bugging newly crowned New Zealand Women's Open golf champion Lydia Ko for a snap yesterday.

Ko had no idea who the famous rugby player was and was later heard saying to a New Zealand Golf staffer: "That guy that asked for a picture, he was good looking. Really good looking."

While Dagg might have been the apple of Ko's eye, the 15-year-old was the belle of the ball at Clearwater.

She held her cool in front of more that 1500 people on the final green to win her third professional tournament, by one shot.

When she holed her nervy one-metre putt on the last hole, Ko burst into tears and the gallery burst into applause.

She later revealed that she was just as nervous about having to speak in front of them as she had been about having to sink pressure putts on the final three holes.

Ko said the win rated higher for her then both the New South Wales and Canadian Open wins last year, and she was equally relieved and happy about her victory.

"I feel now, relaxed, because I was pretty nervous out there," she said, flanked by two trophies, one for the champion and one for being the top amateur.

"I think it was a pretty good day out there. I'm pretty excited to have my name on this trophy."

Ko is the first New Zealander to win the tournament.

How will she celebrate? "I think we're going to a Japanese restaurant for dinner. Obviously there will be no drinking."

Ko could be a double winner this week. The North Harbour schoolgirl is also a finalist in the New Zealand Sportswomen of the Year category at Thursday's Halberg Awards.

This win does not count towards that.

But if she carries on outplaying golfers with two and three times more experience, she could well feature in the future.

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- The Press

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