OWINGS MILLS, Md. – Former world No. 1 Yani Tseng led the upset of the day at the International Crown.
Burying a 13-foot birdie at the last, she secured Chinese Taipei’s sweep of the No. 1-seeded Americans on Thursday at Caves Valley Golf Club.
Tseng teamed with Phoebe Yao to defeat Stacy Lewis and Lexi Thompson, 1 up, in their fourballs match. Earlier, Chinese Taipei’s Teresa Lu and Candie Kung teamed to rout USA’s Cristie Kerr and Paula Creamer.
Those victories catapulted Chinese Taipei to the top of the Pool B standings with a 2-0 mark, which was worth four points, a point better than Spain. A victory is worth two points in these matches with a half worth a point.
The Americans weren’t just shut out. They never held a lead on Day 1.
Japan is in control of Pool B after a victory and a half in their matches with Sweden.
Fourballs play will continue Friday with teams trying to position themselves to make it to Sunday singles. The top two teams from each pool advance to Sunday along with a fifth wild-card The teams finishing third in each pool will meet in a sudden-death playoff Saturday evening with the winner advancing as the wild card.
DAY 1 RESULTS
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Spain’s Belen Mozo/Beatriz Recari halved with Thailand’s Moriya Jutanugarn/Ariya Jutanugarn.
The lowdown: Trailing 1 down with two holes to go, the Spaniards salvaged a half after Mozo made her fourth birdie of the day at the 17th and then secured a point with a final par.
Spain’s Azahara Munoz/Carlota Ciganda def. Thailand’s Pornanong Phatlum/Onnarin Sattayabanphot, 3 and 2. The lowdown: Channeling her inner Seve Ballesteros, Ciganda birdied the first hole and the Spaniards never looked back. They led the entire match.
Japan’s Mamiko Higa/Mika Miyazato halved with Sweden’s Anna Nordqvist/Caroline Hedwall.
The lowdown: The Swedes fought back after falling 2 down with six holes to go but lost a chance to win the match when Nordqvist’s 5-footer for birdie at the last hole slid right of the cup.
Japan’s Ai Miyazato/Sakura Yokomine def. Sweden’s Pernilla Lindberg/Mikaela Parmlid, 2 up.
The lowdown: Yokomine was the star of this match, converting five birdies, including one at the last to take any doubt out of the final outcome.
South Korea’s Inbee Park/So Yeon Ryu def. Australia’s Katherine Kirk/Lindsey Wright, 3 and 2.
The lowdown: The best team on Day 1, Park and Ryu combined for five birdies and an eagle over the first 12 holes. Ryu was especially hot, going 6 under over the first 12 holes.
Australia’s Karrie Webb/Minjee Lee def. South Korea’s Na Yeon Choi/I.K. Kim, 2 up.
The lowdown: Lee, the 18-year-old amateur, was brilliant alongside Hall of Famer Webb. She made all four of Australia’s birdies in this match.
Chinese Taipei’s Teresa Lu/Candie Kung def. USA’s Cristie Kerr/Paula Creamer, 4 and 3.
The lowdown: Lu (44) and Kung (118) have a combined world-ranking total of 162, but they made easy work of the much higher-ranked Kerr (10) and Creamer (12). Creamer managed one birdie on the day, with Kerr making the lone American birdie on the back nine.
Chinese Taipei’s Yani Tseng/Phoebe Yao def. USA’s Stacy Lewis/Lexi Thompson, 1 up.
The lowdown: Tseng stuffed her approach at the 18th to 13 feet and buried the birdie putt to win the match.