Lindsey Wright Cristie Kerr lead as Lorena Ochoa falters

By Associated PressMay 9, 2009, 4:00 pm
Bookmark and Share
LPGA Tour _newWILLIAMSBURG, Va. ' Lindsey Wright shot a 7-under 64 and Cristie Kerr had a 66 to share the third-round lead as Lorena Ochoa faltered Saturday in the Michelob Ultra Open.
 
The top-ranked Ochoa shot 74 with only two birdies, both of which were canceled out by a double-bogey at the par-4 14th. She started the day leading by three and now is five behind.
 
I dont know what happened, Ochoa said. I didnt hit the ball bad. I lipped out maybe four putts today. A couple of them were about 6 feet, so I was a little frustrated.
 
Cristie Kerr
Cristie Kerr had plenty of reason to smile after her finish Saturday. (Getty Images)
Instead of a runaway by Ochoa, who led after each of the first two rounds, it was the steadiness of Wright ' she came within a shot of the course record and has just one bogey in the first 54 holes of the tournament ' and the resiliency of Kerr that defined the day.
 
They will play in the final twosome on Sunday.
 
Im excited, said Wright, an Australian in her sixth year on tour and still seeking her first victory. She said she isnt even certain when she last played in the final grouping.
 
I feel like Im ready. Its great to be in this position. Ive worked really hard on my game, so Ive earned the right to be here, she said. Its not like, Oh wow! Im leading the tournament. I mean, my expectations are that I expect to be here. But in saying that, its also a new experience. I love to go head-to-head with the best players in the world.
 
She wont have to look far to find one of them. Kerr is ranked sixth in the world, has won 11 times in her career, including the 2007 U.S. Open, and won this tournament in 2005.
 
She said her birdie-birdie finish to gain a share of the lead was big.
 
If you dont have to make up shots, its better, she said.
 
In-Kyung Kim, one back after a 67, will play with Song-Hee Kim, who is two back after a 68, with Wendy Ward (67) and Natalie Gulbis (68) in the third-to-last group. Ochoa, who is tied with Ward and Gulbis, is in the fourth pairing with Shiho Oyama, who is seven back.
 
Im going to tell myself tomorrow is a new day, Ochoa said.
 
Ochoas 13-under total coming into the day was a midpoint record, and Wright said having the 27-year-old leading the way inspired her to a share of the three-round mark at 15 under.
 
Having seen Lorena at the top off the leaderboard, that kind of sets the wheels in motion when you get to the first tee because you know youve got to make birdies, she said.
 
On Sunday, she intends to employ lessons learned from past days in contention, most recently the Kraft Nabisco Championship, where she finished fourth a month ago.
 
Chief among those lessons, she said, is staying in the present.
 
If you start planning the speech on the first hole, you know youre going to be in trouble. Its a matter of playing each shot at a time. Youve got to pace yourself, she said.
 
Kerrs intention is to stick to her new, Zen-based approach to controlling her mind.
 
I have to focus on where I want to go tomorrow instead of being tied for the lead, because obviously thats not going to hold up, she said, adding that her mental training not only steers her clear of negative thoughts, but allows her to negotiate the rough patches.
 
If you can ride those patches where not everything is coming together, thats when you know youre playing really well, she said.
 
Related Links:
  • Full Coverage - Michelob Ultra Open
  • Getty Images

    PGA Tour, LPGA react to video review rules changes

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 11, 2017, 1:32 pm

    The USGA and R&A announced on Monday updates to the Rules of Golf, including no longer accepting call-ins relating to violations. The PGA Tour and LPGA, which were both part of a working group of entities who voted on the changes, issued the following statements:

    PGA Tour:

    The PGA Tour has worked closely with the USGA and R&A on this issue in recent years, and today's announcement is another positive step to ensure the Rules of Golf align with how the game is presented and viewed globally. The PGA Tour will adopt the new Local Rule beginning January 1, 2018 and evolve our protocols for reviewing video evidence as outlined.

    LPGA:

    We are encouraged by the willingness of the governing bodies to fully vet the issues and implement real change at a pace much quicker than the sport has seen previously. These new adaptations, coupled with changes announced earlier this year, are true and meaningful advances for the game. The LPGA plans to adopt fully the protocols and new Local Rule as outlined.

    Getty Images

    Sharma closes on Monday, wins Joburg Open

    By Associated PressDecember 11, 2017, 12:43 pm

    JOHANNESBURG – Shubhankar Sharma won his first European Tour title by a shooting 3-under 69 Monday in the final round of the weather-delayed Joburg Open.

    The 21-year-old Indian resumed his round on the eighth green after play was halted early Sunday afternoon because of storms. He parred that hole, birdied No. 9 and made par on every hole on the back nine.


    Full-field scores from the Joburg Open


    Sharma finished at 23-under 264, three strokes ahead of the pack, and qualified for next year's British Open, too.

    ''I actually wasn't going to come here about a week ago ... so I'm really happy that I came,'' said Sharma, who shot 61 in the second round. ''I don't think I'm ever going forget my first time in South Africa.''

    Erik van Rooyen (66) was second, three strokes ahead of Shaun Norris (65) and Tapio Pulkkanen (68).

    Getty Images

    Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 11, 2017, 12:30 pm

    Sharma among three Open qualifiers at Joburg Open

    By Will GrayDecember 11, 2017, 12:16 pm

    Shubhankar Sharma earned his first career European Tour win at the rain-delayed Joburg Open and punched his ticket to The Open in the process.

    Sharma returned to Randpark Golf Club Monday morning after storms washed out much of the scheduled final day of play. Beginning the re-start with a four-shot lead, he hung on to win by three over South Africa's Erik Van Rooyen.

    Both men can make travel plans for Carnoustie next summer, as this was the second event in the Open Qualifying Series with three spots available for players not otherwise exempt who finished inside the top 10. The final spot went to Shaun Norris, who tied for third with Finland's Tapio Pulkkanen but had a higher world ranking (No. 192) than Pulkkanen (No. 197) entering the week.

    The Joburg Open was the final official European Tour event of the year. The next tournament in the Open Qualifying Series will be the SMBC Singapore Open in January, where four spots at Carnoustie will be up for grabs.