WORLD No 1 Stacy Lewis of the United States held on tightly onto a shaky
one-shot lead with a mob of South Koreans snapping at her heels in the
Sime Darby LPGA at the Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club yesterday.
Shooting a flawless six-under 65, the American will have to play better gold today to fend of the chasing pack.
Na Yeon Choi, Park Hee Young, Ji Eun-Hee and Ryu So Yeon are the
K-Pop group singing behind the American bunched at five-under.
And after a break from China's Feng Shanshan; Lee Mi Hyang, Shin Jenny
and Yang Amy continue the Korean run at four-under and bunched at
The weather was hot, and hazy, but the ladies dazzled the crowd with some spectacular putting skills.
Yesterday, the World No 1 used an aggressive approach on the ninth
hole, an approach that led to three consecutive birdies on nine, 10th
and 11th. She finished with a bogey-free round and a feeling that she
was able to get through the day.
“Another week I got off to a
good start again. It was kind of one of those rounds that early it was
actually kind of shaky and had to make a few par putts on the first
three holes, but really just kind of hung in there and gave myself a lot
of birdie looks at it and was fortunate to make a few. So it was a
little bit of an ugly round, but I got a lot out of it.”
Ryu, who after an opening round 66, credited a golf simulator with the
growth of golf in Korea. When she was younger, many of her friends were
unfamiliar with the game so it was hard to connect with them.
“After the golf simulator business, people start to play more golf, and I
believe our golf population is going to increase a lot,” said said.
Natalie Gulbis (US) shot 69, Karrie Webb (Aust) carded 70, and Lexi
Thompson (US) — who won by four strokes here last year — had a 71. Paula
Creamer (US) shot 75.
Korean Na Yeon Choi had a super day: “I
had a great day. I think the good thing is I started very early, first
group, as it was a little bit cooler.
“But in the afternoon, the
heat affected my focus out there. I think that's why I missed a couple
of fairways on the back nine.
“That's why I got one bogey out
there. But I don't have any regrets out there. My putt was good.
After last week I had practiced a lot for short game, and I think it
just paid off,” said Yeon Choi.
FIRST ROUND SCORES: 65 Stacy Lewis (US).
66 Ji Eun-Hee, Ryu So Yeon, Park Hee Young, Choi Na Yeon (S Kor).
67 Pornanong Phatlum (Thai), Lee Mi Hyang, Jenny Shin, Amy Yang (S Kor), Feng Shanshan (Ch).
68 Catriona Matthew (Scot), Karine Icher (Fra), Haru Nomura (Jpn), Lizette Salas (US), Carlota Ciganda (Sp); 69 Lydia Ko (NZ), Juleita Granada (Par), Azahara Munoz (Sp), Angela Standford, Danielle Kang, Brittany Lang, Gerina Piller, Natalie Gulbis (US), Anna Nordqvist (Swe), Lee-Anne Pace (SA), Ariya Jutanugara, Moriya Jutanugara (Thai), Choi Chella (S Kor), Jodi Ewart Shadoff (Eng).
70 Lee Ilhee (S Kor), Pernilla Lindberg (Swe), Ayako Uehara (Jpn), Karrie Webb, Dori Carter, Kris Tamulus (US), Tidapa Suwannapura (Thai), Beatriz Ricari (Sp), Christina Kim (US), Yoo Sun Young (S Kor).
71 Jessica Korda, Lexi Thompson, Morgan Pressel, Marina Alex, Austin Ernst (US), Suzann Pettersen (Nor), Laura Davies (Eng), Mirim Lee, Hur Mi JIng (S Kor), Katherine Kirk (Aus), Line Vedel (Den), K. Muangkhumsakul (Thai), Candie Kung (Tai), Dewi Claire Schreefel (Ned), Jennifer Rosales (Phil).
72 Charley Hull (Eng), Caroline Masson (Ger), Lin Xi Yu (Ch), Michelle Koh (Mas), Laura Diaz (US); 73 Belen Mozo (Sp), Sandra Gal (Ger), Tiffany Joh (US), Oh Ji Young (S Kor), Ainil Johani Abu Bakar, Aretha Pan (Mas).
74 Kelly Tan (Mas), Kang Haeji (S Kor), Sarah Jane Smith (Aus), Kim Kaufman (US), Mariajo Uribe (Col); 75 Paula Creamer, Mina Hariage (US), Michele Low, Jean Chua (Mas); 79 Amelia Lewis (US).