Anna Nordqvist: 'My grandfather inspired my golf major triumph'

Anna Norqvist celebrates second major LPGA win
Anna Norqvist celebrates second major LPGA win


    Anna Norqvist celebrates second major LPGA win


Anna Norqvist celebrates second major LPGA win 01:41

Story highlights

  • Anna Nordqvist defies severe weather to win Evian Championship
  • Cites influence of late grandfather in second major victory
  • Tells CNN Sport: "I hate to give up"

(CNN)Torrential rain lashed the players and hail formed in puddles on the greens, but Anna Nordqvist clung to the advice of her late grandather and refused to give up as she clinched the 2017 Evian Championship.

The 30-year-old Swede emerged from the storm to beat America's Brittany Altomare in Sunday's playoff in France, the mantra of her grandfather ringing in her ears.
It was her second major title, eight years after the first, and came a few short months after she battled a bout of glandular fever.
    "My grandfather was an amazing person and he still inspires me today," Nordqvist told CNN Sport.
    "He has always been a huge inspiration -- he'd always email me, text me or Skype me to tell me to always keep my head up and never give up.
    "The last couple of months haven't been easy for me but I've just tried to do my best and it's paid off."

    'Hate giving up'

    Nordqvist has had 12 top-10 major finishes since her breakthrough triumph at the 2009 LPGA Championship, and only a contentious two-shot penalty stopped her contending for the 2016 US Open trophy.
    She has had to watch and wait while a succession of new, younger names have clinched the LPGA Tour's biggest titles.
    But her determination has paid off.
    "Yeah, the US Open was obviously tough, but I kind of left it behind me as soon as I was leaving the parking lot," said Nordqvist, who climbed from 13th to number four in the world.
    "It's just unfortunate what happened. I didn't get the trophy but I knew I was close to hopefully winning another major."
    Nordqvist trailed leader Moriya Jutanugarn by five shots going into the final round, and it took a stellar back nine -- comprised of three birdies, an eagle and just one dropped shot -- before she even considered lifting the trophy that drab afternoon.
    "I grew up playing golf in Sweden, and played quite a bit during the winter," she said. "So that definitely helped me, just knowing I could play well in those tough conditions."
    Nordqvist and Altomare tied at nine under at the conclusion of 54 holes - the tournament was shortened by a round after Thursday was washed out -- and the Swede won at the first extra hole.
    "I haven't played in hail before so that was a new situation, but I just tried to stay positive, stay warm and stay dry. It was pretty impossible but I hate to give up."