rio olympics

Under and out: Tiffany Chan fires her best round of the week to finish Olympics on a high

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 21 August, 2016, 1:41am
UPDATED : Sunday, 21 August, 2016, 3:00pm

Hong Kong's Tiffany Chan Tsz-ching closed strong at the Olympics golf tournament, recording a two-under-par 69 on Saturday for her best round of the week.

Seven-time major winner Park In-bee added the gold medal to her glittering trophy collection, finishing with a 66 – her third of the week – for a 16-under total.

WATCH: Tiffany Chan shines at the Rio Olympics

Teenager Lydia Ko was five shots back for the silver, and China's Feng Shanshan took bronze on 10 under par.

Chan, one of only three amateurs in the field, signed for a four-over total of 288 (71-75-73-69). She had six birdies and four bogies on the final day.

On the attack: Hong Kong’s Tiffany Chan looking to finish solid Olympic effort on a high

Though she played solidly among the world-class field throughout the week, one or two blips per round, particulary on the 11th hole, cost her.

Had she parred hole 11 every day, she'd have finished on two under, but she went bogey-triple-double-bogey over her four rounds.

WATCH: Tiffany Chan becomes the first Hong Kong golfer to play in the Olympics

But the 22-year-old is confident the Olympic experience will be a massive boost as she heads out to California to take part in the first stage of the LPGA Tour's qualifying school this week in her bid to become a professional.

"Maybe at the next Olympics we can have a few more Hong Kong players out there, they’ll know they can do it," Chan said. "I'm willing to share and I hope there's more coming up."

Winner Park said the Olympic win bettered any of her other titles: "I feel extremely honoured and proud that I get to win a gold medal in the Olympic Games.

"It feels truly unreal. I am just so happy to be standing on the highest spot on the podium.

"I have won many tournaments but I have never felt this before.

"I think golf is going to get more popular after a lot of people watched today. Even people who don't like golf have watched this week. "

Ko concurred: "Before coming here we had some negative press but I think we have all proved what an amazing week it was for golf, for the woman's game. I have learned so much from this experience."

Feng was only one shot better than Chan after day one, but upped her game over the last three. She said she had no idea she was in medal contention, but hoped her success would boost the game in China.

Late rally lifts Tiffany Chan’s spirits after frustrating second day at Olympic Course

"It is unbelievable because I came in the last round in fourth and I knew I would have a chance but I didn't want to give myself any pressure so I didn't look at the leaderboard the whole time," she said.

"And I didn't know where I was at, actually until I finished on the 18th and I asked my caddy 'Where am I?' and he said 'You are t-2 (tied for second)' and I was like 'What, I got a medal?'.

"You know China is a very strong country at the Olympics, I am just one of the Chinese athletes to get a medal this time but what makes it special is I am a golfer and I think it is the first time a Chinese golfer is playing in it.

"Like I said before the tournament, 'If anyone from China can get a medal that would be great' and I actually did it."

Maria Verchenova of Russia set a record on the newly built course with a 62, including a hole-in-one.