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Friday, December 8, 2023

AIG Ladies’s Open: Rose Zhang, Nelly Korda, prime stars struggling


Walton Heath Golf Membership, the host of this 12 months’s AIG Ladies’s Open, has kicked everybody within the tooth.

It performed extra like a U.S. Open on day one than an Open Championship.

“Something underneath par is an efficient rating on this golf course,” stated Charley Hull, the Englishwoman who tied for second on the 2023 U.S. Ladies’s Open.

Solely 33 gamers are underneath par after the opening spherical, as American Ally Ewing holds the lead at 4-under.

Rose Zhang, in the meantime, battled the difficult English structure en path to an even-par 72 on Thursday.

“It performed a bit of bit tough on the market,” Zhang admitted after her spherical. “I hit some good pictures, I hit some good putts, however a few of them didn’t drop. Out right here, you simply need to be affected person. It’s a British Open golf course.”

A few of the putts Zhang missed have been comparatively quick. On the par-4 thirteenth, she missed a three-footer for par, which dropped her again to 1-over for the championship.

However she bounced again with a birdie on the par-4 fifteenth.

On the powerful par-4 18th, Zhang pushed her tee shot proper—into the purple heather that strains the fairways at Walton Heath. A double bogey loomed.

Rose Zhang, LPGA, AIG Women’s Open

TADWORTH, England — Rose Zhang performs a shot from a bunker on the 18th gap on Day One of many AIG Ladies’s Open at Walton Heath Golf Membership on August 10, 2023.
Photograph by Warren Little/Getty Pictures

But, she managed to advance her second shot as much as the greenside bunker and proceeded to make a world-class par.

On a course the place hassle lurks anyplace, anybody inside six pictures of Ewing has an opportunity going into the weekend.

That features Nelly Korda, who carded a 1-over 73 on Thursday.

The number-one ranked participant on the earth had an up-and-down spherical. When Korda arrived on the par-3 seventeenth, she sat at even par. She made a bogey-four there, then pared the 18th to complete the day.

Ending one stroke behind Korda was Celine Boutier, who has received the final two occasions on the LPGA Tour.

The Frenchwoman struggled all day; at one level, she sat at 4-over for the championship. But, the 2023 Amundi Evian Champion birdied each the par-5 sixteenth and the par-3 seventeenth to get it again to 2-over for the event.

She is one in every of 100 gamers that sit at 2-over or higher after day one, as a lot of the subject remains to be in rivalry.

It’s a bunched leaderboard with no person working away with it, which ought to create some terrific drama this weekend—one thing the AIG Ladies’s Open has grown accustomed to in recent times.

Jack Milko is a golf employees author for SB Nation’s Taking part in By. You possibly can observe him on Twitter @jack_milko for extra golf protection. Be sure you try @_PlayingThrough too.


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