Lee ties Bri­tish Open record

The Hamilton Spectator - - SPORTS -

WOBURN, ENG­LAND — Mirim Lee shot a 10-un­der 62 on Thurs­day to match the Women’s Bri­tish Open record and open a three-stroke lead in the ma­jor golf cham­pi­onship at tree-lined Woburn Golf Club.

Three weeks af­ter shoot­ing a 64 in the first round of the U.S. Women’s Open, the 25-year-old South Korean player made the last of her 10 birdies on the par-3 17th and closed with a par.

Lee fell a stroke short of the LPGA Tour ma­jor record of 61 set by Hyo Joo Kim in the first round of the 2014 Evian Cham­pi­onship. Minea Blomqvist shot a 62 in the third round of the 2004 Women’s Bri­tish Open at Sun­ning­dale, and Lorena Ochoa had a 62 in first round of the 2006 Kraft Nabisco. Lee also matched her of­fi­cial LPGA Tour ca­reer low set in the sec­ond round of the 2014 LPGA Tai­wan.

“I’ve shot 11 un­der be­fore,” Lee said. “It was back in, I think, sec­ond round of LPGA Q-school, fi­nal stage.”

Ariya Ju­tanu­garn was sec­ond af­ter a bo­gey-free 65. China’s Shan­shan Feng had a 66, and Amer­i­can Stacy Lewis and South Korea’s Mi Hyang Lee shot 67.

Lee birdied the first two holes, added an­other on the fourth and made five straight on Nos. 7-11 to reach 8 un­der. She also birdied the par-3 13th.

“When you nor­mally think of Bri­tish Open, you think of high roughs, dif­fi­cult roughs,” Lee said. “But here it feels more like Cal­i­for­nia, so I think that re­ally made me feel com­fort­able.”

In Cal­i­for­nia at CordeValle in the U.S. Women’s Open, she fol­lowed her open­ing 64 with rounds of 74, 76 and 73 to tie for 11th.

She missed the cut in the ANA In­spi­ra­tion to start the ma­jor year, and tied for fourth in the KPMG Women’s PGA.

“I think the dif­fer­ence is that now I’m try­ing to have fun,” Lee said.

“I’m try­ing to en­joy it, whereas in the be­gin­ning of the year, things weren’t re­ally go­ing well for me, so I re­ally put a lot of work into it and I think it’s just nat­u­ral that it’s show­ing, the hard work is show­ing now,” she added.

South Korea’s Mirim Lee shot a 10-un­der 62.

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