Flawless Day Ties Wie for Lead

By Sports NetworkJuly 27, 2006, 4:00 pm
2006 Evian MastersEVIAN, France -- Michelle Wie fired a 6-under 66 Thursday to move into a share of the lead after two rounds of the Evian Masters. Wie was joined at 9-under-par 135 by Karrie Webb and Lorena Ochoa.
Webb, who claimed the Kraft Nabisco Championship earlier this year, posted a 4-under 68, while Ochoa carded a 3-under 69 to get to minus-9.
Lorena Ochoa
Lorena Ochoa is in search of her third victory of the season.
Se Ri Pak is alone in fourth place at minus-8 after a second straight round of 4-under 68.
Mi Hyun Kim, who shared the lead after round one with Ochoa and Shani Waugh, is at 7-under-par 137 after a 1-under 71 in round two.
Women's world No. 1 Annika Sorenstam notched her second straight 3-under 69. She stands alongside defending champion Paula Creamer and Lorie Kane in sixth place at minus-6.
Sorenstam carded a bogey at the first and birdies on three and five to move to minus-4. Around the turn, she carded three birdies and a bogey.
Wie got off to a quick start with a 4-foot birdie putt on the first, then back-to-back birdies from the third. She pitched her third at the par-5 seventh within tap-in range to get to 7 under.
The young Hawaiian drained a 10-foot birdie try on the 10th, then drained a 30-footer for birdie at the next to move to minus-9. Wie still trailed at that point, but the leaders (Webb and Ochoa) fell back to her as she parred the final seven holes.
'I made some good pars and I feel a lot better then yesterday,' Wie stated. 'I still feel like I left a lot of shots out there, but overall my game feels good. Hopefully, I will be able to maintain it.'
Ochoa moved to 10 under with four birdies on the opening nine at Evian Masters Golf Club, but trouble loomed for the Mexican. She tripped to a bogey on the par-4 12th.
The 24-year-old Ochoa faltered to back-to-back bogeys from the 14th to slide to minus-7. She got one stroke back with a birdie on 16 and gained a share of the lead with a birdie on the par-5 closing hole.
'I think I am in a good position for the weekend. I did struggle a little bit on the back nine with three bogeys,' Ochoa admitted. 'That was tough, but I ended up making two birdies on the last three holes. I am hitting the ball pretty good.'
Webb birdied three of the first five holes to climb to minus-8. After a bogey on the sixth, she reclaimed that lost stroke with a birdie at the seventh.
The 31-year-old Australian eagled the par-5 ninth and came right back with a birdie on 10 to get to 11 under, which gave her the lead. Webb stumbled to a three-putt double-bogey on the 13th to drop to minus-9.
Webb gave another stroke back as she bogeyed the 16th, but managed to grab a share of the lead with a birdie at the last.
'I got off to a great start again today. I was 5 under at the turn and then birdied 10 to get to 6 under for the day,' said Webb. 'I made a double-bogey on 13, so that was pretty careless. I am pretty happy with my performance and I feel like I am putting well this week.'
Waugh struggled to a 1-over 73. That dropped her into a share of ninth at 5-under-par 139, where she was joined by two-time winner Laura Davies (71).
Jeong Jang, who will defend her crown at the Women's British Open next week, is a stroke back at minus-4. She stands alongside Carin Koch, Suzann Pettersen and Maria Hjorth.
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    Fleetwood flawless en route to Abu Dhabi lead

    By Will GrayJanuary 18, 2018, 2:06 pm

    New year, same results for Tommy Fleetwood.

    The reigning Race to Dubai champ picked up where he left off in the opening round of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship, carding a bogey-free 66 during which the Englishman found all 18 greens in regulation. At 6 under, he shares the lead with Japan's Hideto Tanihara and sits one shot clear of five other players.

    "Very stress-free. Played really well from start to finish," Fleetwood said. "Felt like I did what you need to do around this golf course, which is drive it well, hit your irons solid. You can't really be too greedy a lot of the time, and then sort of my pace putting was really good. So basically just did what you need to do to get a good score around this golf course, and I got one."

    Full-field scores from the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship

    Fleetwood shined in a marquee grouping that included world No. 1 Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy, as he birdied three holes on each nine. This is his first worldwide start since a T-3 finish at the Hero World Challenge.

    It was at this event a year ago that Fleetwood sparked a career campaign, edging Johnson and Pablo Larrazabal for the win. He added another win at the French Open in the summer to go along with a pair of runner-up results and a T-4 finish at the U.S. Open, all of which helped him capture the European Tour's season-long title.

    Fleetwood's sudden success in Abu Dhabi serves as a microcosm for his career resurgence. Prior to last year's victory, he had missed the cut in four of his five other trips to this event.

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    Sergio starts season with 66 in Singapore

    By Associated PressJanuary 18, 2018, 12:56 pm

    SINGAPORE – Sergio Garcia opened his season with a 5-under 66 and a share of the clubhouse lead on Thursday in the first round of the weather-interrupted Singapore Open.

    Playing his first tournament of the year, the Masters champion rebounded after making an early bogey to collect four birdies and an eagle at the Sentosa Golf Club.

    He was later joined by American qualifier Kurt Kitayama in the clubhouse lead. Still on the course, Tirawat Kaewsiribandit was at 6 under through 16 holes when play was suspended for the day because of the threat of lightning.

    Louis Oosthuizen, the 2010 Open champion, was at 5 under through 16 holes when he also had to stop his round because of the weather.

    Of the players who did finish their opening rounds, only three were within two strokes of Garcia and Kitayama. One of them was Casey O'Toole, who aced the par-3 second with a 7-iron.

    The 38-year-old Garcia dropped his only shot of the day on the par-4 15th, his sixth hole after teeing off on the back nine, when he missed the fairway and was unable to make par. But he made amends when he birdied the par-3 17th and then eagled the par-5 18th to go out in 33.

    ''I was 1 over after (the) seventh but it didn't feel like I was playing badly,'' said Garcia, who made birdies on each of the two par 5s and one of the par 3s on the second nine. ''But then I hit two greats in a row for holes 17 and 18. I got a birdie-eagle there, so that settled me a little bit and I could play solid in the back nine and it was a great round.''

    Garcia made the shortlist for the Laureus Sports Awards in the Breakthrough of the Year category after claiming his first major at Augusta National last year and is hoping for more success this season.

    He credits the Singapore Open as having played a part in toughening him up for his Masters win because he opted to start his 2017 campaign in the stifling humidity of Southeast Asia to prepare himself for the bigger tournaments ahead.

    Although he finished tied for 11th in Singapore, Garcia won the Dubai Desert Classic the next week and was in peak form when he won the Masters two months later.

    Kitayama only secured his place in the $1 million event on Monday by finishing at the top of the qualifying competition, but he made a strong start with birdies on three of his first five holes. The 25-year-old Thai was 6 under through 13 holes but spoiled his otherwise flawless round with a bogey on his last.

    ''I started with a birdie and I just let it roll from there. I had some good tee shots, which I think, is the biggest thing for this course,'' Kitayama said. ''I'm a little tired, but I'm hanging in there. Whenever I have time off, I'll try not to think too much about golf.''

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    13-year-old beats DJ in closest-to-the-pin contest

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 18, 2018, 12:26 pm

    Dustin Johnson didn’t just get beat by Tommy Fleetwood and Rory McIlroy on Day 1 of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

    Even a 13-year-old got the best of the world No. 1.

    Oscar Murphy teed off on the 177-yard 15th hole as part of the tournament’s Beat the Pro challenge during the opening round. The Northern Irishman, one of the HSBC’s Future Falcons, carved a 3-wood toward a back-right pin, about 25 feet away, closer than both Johnson and Fleetwood.

    “An unbelievable shot,” Fleetwood said afterward, “and me and Rory both said, ‘We don’t have that in our locker.’”

    Johnson still made par on the hole, but he mixed four birdies with four bogeys Thursday for an even-par 72 that left him six shots back of Fleetwood and Hideto Tanihara after the opening round.

    Johnson, who tied for second here a year ago, is coming off a dominant performance at the Sentry Tournament of Champions, where he won by eight shots to strengthen his lead atop the world rankings. 

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    McIlroy 'really pleased' with opening 69 in Abu Dhabi

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 18, 2018, 12:10 pm

    It was an auspicious 2018 debut for Rory McIlroy.

    Playing alongside world No. 1 Dustin Johnson for his first round since October, McIlroy missed only one green and shot a bogey-free 69 at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship. McIlroy is three shots back of reigning Race to Dubai champion Tommy Fleetwood, who played in the same group as McIlroy and Johnson, and Hideto Tanihara.

    Starting on the back nine at Abu Dhabi Golf Club, McIlroy began with 11 consecutive pars before birdies on Nos. 3, 7 and 8.

    Full-field scores from the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship

    “I was excited to get going,” he told reporters afterward. “The last couple of months have been really nice in terms of being able to concentrate on things I needed to work on in my game and health-wise. I feel like I’m the most prepared for a season that I’ve ever been, but it was nice to get back out there.”

    Fleetwood, the defending champion, raced out to another lead while McIlroy and Johnson, who shot 72, just tried to keep pace.

    “Tommy played very well and I was just trying to hang onto his coattails for most of the round, so really pleased – bogey-free 69, I can’t really complain,” McIlroy said.

    This was his first competitive round in more than three months, since a tie for 63rd at the Dunhill Links. He is outside the top 10 in the world ranking for the first time since 2014.