Golfer Pettersen hailed abroad

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Norwegian golfer Suzann Pettersen is now ranked Number 3 in the world after winning her latest LPGA tournament in Portland, Oregon over the weekend. While her victory grabbed some headlines in Norway, one commentator claimed Pettersen is better recognized abroad than at home.

Golfer Suzann Pettersen, during an appearance on the popular Swedish-Norwegian talk show "Skavlan." She'll be traveling home to Norway soon. PHOTO: NRK screen grab/Views and News

Golfer Suzann Pettersen has made an appearance on the popular Swedish-Norwegian talk show “Skavlan,” but isn’t a big star at home like she is abroad. PHOTO: NRK screen grab/newsinenglish.no

“She’s been extremely good all season, so it was just a matter of time before she’d win again (on the LPGA tour),” Per Haugsrud, Norwegian golf expert and commentator for Viasat Golf, told Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK) after she shot a five-under-par 67 in the Safeway Classic Presented by Coca-Cola tournament. Haugsrud has pointed out how Pettersen is one of the greatest golf stars in the world, but folks home in Norway don’t seem to realize it.

“She doesn’t play tournaments in Norway,” Haugsrud told NRK, and golf isn’t a major sport in Norway. “You have to go to the US and Asia to understand how big she really is.”

He added that the 32-year-old Pettersen, who’s from Oslo, “has been good for so long, and is very colourful. She’s easily recognized. When tournaments are marketed and there’s talk about tournaments on TV, she’s always mentioned. If she’s not the biggest of them all, she’s very close.”

Pettersen herself called her victory over the weekend “fantastic,” and not just for the handsome cash winnings she could pocket. “Portland has been good for me earlier,” Pettersen told NRK. “I was playing well all week and it was cool to draw the longest straw at the end.”

Her new LPGA victory places her third in the current rankings behind Inbee Park of South Korea and Stacy Lewis of the US. Pettersen’s winnings have amounted to USD 1.23 million.

Now it’s on to France for the next LPGA tournament from September 12-15. Haugsrud says she’ll be the favorite heading into the fifth and last major tournament of the season.

newsinenglish.no/Nina Berglund