Miyazato holds 1-shot lead at Evian after 2 rounds
Sep. 14, 2013
EVIAN-LES-BAINS, France (AP) — Teen amateur Lydia Ko of New Zealand was within a shot of leader Mika Miyazato of Japan at the Evian Championship with one round left on Saturday.
Miyazato held her overnight lead with a 2-under 69 to be 8 under overall after the second round.
Rain has shortened the fifth and last women's major of the year to three rounds and left the greens soggy. The course dried out somewhat on Saturday but more showers are forecast for the final round.
Ko, who has tremendous composure for her 16 years, had four birdies in an error-free 4-under 67 but wished someone could invent glasses for bad weather.
"I'm having to clean (them) all the time," she said. "I really want to get contacts. Cars have got wipers, they should design one for glasses. I would myself if I could."
Miyazato is looking for her first U.S. LPGA title this year, and her day started poorly with bogeys on the first two holes.
Suzann Pettersen of Norway bogeyed her two holes on the back nine but fired four birdies like Miyazato for a 69 to share second with Ko.
"I didn't play my perfect game of golf out there, but I made a few really good pars," Pettersen said.
Ko successfully defended her Canadian Women's Open title last month and the young Kiwi's form hasn't dropped.
"I definitely gave myself a lot of opportunities," Ko said. "Hopefully it will be a good day tomorrow. But I can't hit it as good as I did today every single day."
No. 2-ranked Stacy Lewis is two shots back in fourth after posting 67. The American is chasing her second major win this season after last month's British Open.
South Koreans Se Ri Pak, Chella Choi and So Yeon Ryu and Lindsey Wright of Australia are all three shots behind Miyazato. But the most remarkable round of the day belonged to Sweden's Caroline Hedwall: Two double bogeys, two bogeys, a hole in one on the 16th, and seven birdies.
The U.S. LPGA Tour decided late Friday to shorten the major to 54 holes, having initially hoped to complete the 72 rounds by playing two rounds on Sunday.
"I understand we're in a difficult position, it's not ideal for either the championship or for the players or for the tour in general to cut down on major rounds," the third-ranked Pettersen said.
Some of the greens were expected to be covered overnight in a bid to optimize playing conditions.
Lewis was unhappy about the reduction from 72 to 54, and thinks the cut should have been shortened, rather than the tournament.
"It's unfortunate. I think a major should be 72 holes. I would have liked to have seen a cut to 50 instead of 70 and try to get 72 (holes) in," she said. "It's going to be muddy and wet. You just got to adjust and see what you can do."
What seems certain is that history will not be made at Evian, where top-ranked Inbee Park is bidding to become the first professional to win four majors in a season. She has an enormous amount of work to do from 3 over if she is to scoop the winners' purse.
She had a double bogey on the 4th hole and waited until the 13th for her first birdie of the day, then clipped in another to make par.