Weekend Herald

Solid start: Ko third af­ter late bo­gey

- Joel Ku­las­ing­ham Sports · Golf · Pennsylvania · Shriners Hospitals for Children · Lydia Ko

Ly­dia Ko i s one shot be­hind the lead­ers at the PGA Cham­pi­onship af­ter a late bo­gey cost her a share of top spot.

Ko was tied for the lead head­ing into the fi­nal hole only to shoot a five on the par- four 18th, one of t wo bo­geys on her score­card, to fin­ish with a t wo- un­der 68 af­ter the first round at Arnon­imink Golf Club in Penn­syl­va­nia.

The Kiwi for­mer world No 1 trails Amer­i­can Brit­tany Lin­ci­come and Kelly Tan, of Malaysia, to sit in a sixway tie for third in the third ma­jor of the year.

Ko was happy with her round, con­sid­er­ing the tough, windy con­di­tions.

“I felt like I hit the ball re­ally solid, tried to hit as many fair­ways and greens as I could,” Ko said. “It was tough out there with it be­ing breezy. I feel like ev­ery day, even though the wind might say like 10 or 12 miles an hour, it al­ways feels a bit higher than that. So I tried to play con­sis­tent and feel like I’ve done that well. Hope­fully I’m go­ing to con­tinue do­ing that.”

Af­ter fall­ing down the world rank­ings fol­low­ing a stretch of dis­ap­point­ing re­sults, the 23- year- old has made steady progress this year un­der new swing coach Sean Fo­ley and hopes to keep mov­ing in the right di­rec­tion over the week­end.

“I know that with ev­ery­thing, it takes time to get used to things,” she said. “I feel like es­pe­cially the five­week stretch kind of gave me the con­fi­dence and be­lief that I’m mov­ing in the right di­rec­tion.

“This is a very tricky golf course, and I think you re­ally have to be fo­cused out there. With the breeze be­ing up the last few days, the greens have re­ally dried out.

“Be­ing be­low the hole and giv­ing your­self more up­hill looks for birdies and pars is go­ing to be some of the big keys. Nice to start with a solid round and hope­fully I’ll keep the good mo­men­tum go­ing for the rest of the week.”

On the PGA Tour, Danny Lee carded a one- un­der open­ing round at the Shriners Hos­pi­tals for Chil­dren Open, but is in a share of 106th, eight shots off the lead held by US Open cham­pion Bryson DeCham­beau. Only 18 play­ers in the 144- man field shot over par.

 ?? Photo / AP ?? Ly­dia Ko lines up a putt on the 12th hole at Arnon­imink.
Photo / AP Ly­dia Ko lines up a putt on the 12th hole at Arnon­imink.

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