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Miyuu Yamashita Repeats as the JLPGA Tour's Top Golfer in 2023

In addition to winning her second straight season title, Miyuu Yamashita concludes the golf year with a triumph in the JLPGA Tour Championship Ricoh Cup.

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Miyuu Yamashita
Miyuu Yamashita holds a bouquet of flowers after winning the JLPGA Tour title for the second year in a row on November 26, 2023, at Miyazaki Country Club. (KYODO)

Rising star Miyuu Yamashita won five JLPGA Tour events for the second consecutive year in 2023.

Yamashita wrapped up her successful year with a triumph in the season-ending JLPGA Tour Championship Ricoh Cup on Sunday, November 26 in Miyazaki.

The 22-year-old completed the four-round tournament at 10-under 278, finishing with a three-stroke victory over Sayaka Takahashi.

Yamashita shot 3-under 69s in the first and second rounds in the major, followed by back-to-back 70s over the weekend at Miyazaki Country Club.

In addition to winning the Ricoh Cup, the Osaka Prefecture native also clinched the JLPGA Tour's overall title for the second year in a row. She hauled in ¥213.5 million JPY ($1.43 million USD) in tournament earnings this season.

Akie Iwai, who finished second on the money chart (¥169.4 million JPY, or roughly $1.14 million USD) won three of 36 tournaments this season.

Nineteen-year-old Kokona Sakurai, who was second in event titles (four) in 2023, placed seventh in earnings. 

Before Yamashita achieved the feat on Sunday, South Korean Bo Mee Lee was the JLPGA's last golfer to repeat as the leading money winner, doing so in 2015-16.

Miyuu Yamashita
Miyuu Yamashita poses with fans in the stands after winning the JLPGA Tour Championship Ricoh Cup. (ⒸSANKEI)

Miyuu Yamashita: A Model of Consistency

Looking back at the 2023 season, Yamashita was pleased with her overall performance.

"I won four times in the first half of the season but struggled to play my game in the second half, so I'm so happy to win the last tournament," Yamashita was quoted as saying by Kyodo News.

She added, "I stayed injury-free. It was a good year."

Yamashita competed in 32 JLPGA Tour tournaments in 2023, and she finished in the top 10 in a tour-best 20 events.

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Author: Ed Odeven

Find Ed on JAPAN Forward's dedicated website, SportsLook. Follow his [Japan Sports Notebook] on Sundays, [Odds and Evens] during the week, and X (formerly Twitter) @ed_odeven.

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