Olson in position to end U.S. drought
Chasing a first major title for herself, and a first for American women this season, Amy Olson fired a bogeyfree 65 to take a two-shot lead after the third round of the Evian Championship on Saturday.
Olson broke clear to post a 14-under 199 total after twice being in a four-way share of the lead at the sun-soaked Evian Resort Golf Club in France. An eagle at the par-5 9th first took her clear, and she added three birdies on the back nine to stretch her lead over Sei Young Kim.
“I really enjoyed (the nerves), that means I care, right?” Olson said. “It was fun to start solid with a birdie on the first hole.”
Kim carded 64, flashing the form that set a U.S. LPGA Tour record 31-under winning total at the Thornberry Creek Classic in July. Mo Martin, a former Women’s British Open winner, was two shots back on 10 under.
European Tour: Chris Wood birdied the 18th hole to card his second 65 of the KLM Open and take a oneshot lead into the closing round at the Hague, Netherlands.
The Englishman got off to a sluggish start before reeling off five birdies on the back nine to reach 13 under.
Hideto Tanihara of Japan matched the lowest round of the event with an 8-under 63 to join overnight leader Ashun Wu and Jonathan Thomson in a three-way tie for second at 12 under.
ODDS AND ENDS
Tennis: Doubles specialist Mike Bryan’s decision to come out of Davis Cup retirement gave the United States a much-needed lift. Bryan teamed with Ryan Harrison for the first time and helped the Americans outlast Ivan Dodig and Mate Pavic 7-5, 7-6 (6), 1-6, 6-7 (5), 7-6 (5) over nearly five hours to cut Croatia’s lead to 2-1 in their semifinal. In today’s reverse singles, sixth-ranked Marin Cilic faces Steve Johnson, and Borna Coric meets Davis Cup rookie Frances Tiafoe. The winner on the outdoor clay court along Croatia’s Dalmatian Coast will meet defending champion France in the Nov. 23-25 final. France beat Spain 3-0 in the other semifinal.
Auto racing: Lewis Hamilton surprised himself by finding perfect lines to take pole position at the Singapore Grand Prix, while title rival Sebastian Vettel had to settle for third. Hamilton produced something special to set a blistering time in his Mercedes and beat Red Bull’s Max Verstappen by .3 seconds and Vettel by .6. In doing so, Hamilton secured a record-extending 79th pole in Formula One and 200th for a British driver. “I don’t know where it came from but it all came together,” Hamilton said.
Cycling: English rider Simon Yates is poised to win his first Grand Tour title after he successfully defended his lead in the Spanish Vuelta through Saturday’s 20th stage. Yates will take his advantage of 1 minute, 46 seconds, over Enric Mas into the final stage, when race custom dictates the riders don’t attack the race leaders on the traditional arrival to Madrid. Mas moved into second place overall with the stage victory. The Spaniard edged Miguel Angel Lopez of Colombia at the finish.
NHL: Henrik Zetterberg, who won the Conn Smythe Trophy as the top player in the postseason when the Red Wings hoisted the Stanley Cup in 2008, is calling it a career because of back problems. The skillful Swede, 37, is a member of a select group of players that has won a Stanley Cup, world championship and Olympic gold. Zetterberg will go on long-term injured reserve with three years left on his 12-year, $73 million contract. He will continue to be paid and the team will get some $6 million in salary cap relief.