Ol­son in po­si­tion to end U.S. drought

The Palm Beach Post - - SPORTS -

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.

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