Ly­dia misses cut, Cristie ahead

New Straits Times - - Sport -

LOS AN­GE­LES: World No 1 Ly­dia Ko missed the cut for only the sec­ond time in her ca­reer as vet­eran Cristie Kerr opened a oneshot lead at the Kia Clas­sic on Fri­day.

New Zealand’s Ly­dia fired a level-par 72 at the Aviara Golf Club in Carls­bad, Cal­i­for­nia, but it was not enough to ad­vance her to the week­end fol­low­ing her two-over open­ing round 74 on Thurs­day.

With the cut com­ing at oneover, Ly­dia missed out on a place in the third round by just one stroke — ul­ti­mately pay­ing the price for two bo­geys in her fi­nal three holes on Fri­day, in­clud­ing a three-putt on the 18th.

“I was in an okay po­si­tion af­ter half­way then I had a re­ally bad fin­ish, missed two short putts at 16, 17 and ob­vi­ously three-putting the last,” Ly­dia said.

“I can’t do any­thing about it. I tried my best out there to hope­fully put my­self in bet­ter po­si­tion go­ing for­ward, but I can’t do any­thing about it.”

Ly­dia said she planned to use the ex­tra time to head to Palm Springs to get in some ex­tra prac­tice ahead of the ANA In­spi­ra­tion, the first ma­jor of the sea­son.

Cristie held a share of the first round lead with Mo Martin and South Korea’s Chun In-Gee, but she pulled away from the pack.

Cristie started on the back nine and led by as many as three strokes be­fore fal­ter­ing com­ing in.

“I think it’s a course that de­mands a lot of you,” Cristie said. “When you hit a bad shot you have to be able to re­cover and re­ally stay fo­cused the whole day.

“It was a very long day. I feel like my fo­cus left me a lit­tle bit at the end, but I played re­ally well,” added Cristie, an 18-time win­ner on tour who won this event in 2015 for her first of two vic­to­ries that sea­son.

Cristie made two bo­geys in her last four holes as her lead dwin­dled to one.

Her three-un­der 69 put her at nine-un­der 135, one stroke in front of Mo, who carded a 70, and South Korea’s Lee Mi-Rim, who shot her sec­ond straight 68 for 136.AFP

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