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N. Korda grabs 54-hole HSBC lead week after sister's win

By Randall MellMarch 3, 2018, 2:22 pm

The Sister Act is playing across the LPGA stage in Singapore.

Nelly Korda set herself up for a Sunday run at winning the HSBC Women’s World Championship just a week after her older sister, Jessica, won the Honda LPGA Thailand.

Korda, 19, caught fire Saturday to overtake Danielle Kang as the leader on Sentosa Golf Club’s Tanjong Course. With a 7-under-par 65, Korda moved to 15 under overall, a shot better than Kang (70).

Brooke Henderson (65) and Minjee Lee (68) are four shots behind.

Jessica (68) is only five shots back along with Michelle Wie (66), Jin Young Ko (67) and Marina Alex (70).

If Nelly can break through to win her first LPGA title, the Korda sisters will join Annika and Charlotta Sorenstam as the only sister combo to win LPGA titles. Annika won 72 times on tour, Charlotta once. They won in back-to-back weeks in 2000.

Like the golf world at large, Nelly marveled watching Jessica win in Thailand in Jessica’s first event back after a painful and complex surgical reconstruction of her jaw in the offseason. Jessica underwent the procedure to alleviate severe headaches.

“I'm definitely inspired by her win,” Nelly said. “It definitely motivated me a bunch. It was the first tournament of the year and for her to come and crush it the way she did, it was definitely inspiring, and, hopefully, we'll see where tomorrow takes me. She's still there. So she still has a chance. Everyone does.”


Full-field scores from the HSBC Women’s World Championship


Nelly will take a 54-hole lead into the final round of an LPGA event for just the second time in her young career. She had the lead going into Sunday at the Marathon Classic last year, shot 74 and ended up tying for eighth.

“I'll definitely be a little nervous,” Nelly said. “I'm just going to take it shot by shot, really. There are so many great girls bunched up on the leaderboard, close to my score. It's going to be a tough one tomorrow.”

Nelly came from four shots back at Saturday’s start to overtake Kang, the 36-hole leader. Nelly did so with a hard charge in the middle of her round, making five birdies in a six-hole stretch. She was playing alongside Kang in what turned out to be an entertaining back-and-forth duel on the back nine.

“She's a great player,” Kang said. “She shot really well last week, too. I think she made six birdies in a row last week. But, yeah, at the end of the day, I worry about my own game. It was fun, though.”

Fun for fans in Singapore.

Korda tied Kang with a birdie at the 11th, dropped a shot back with a bogey at the 12th, matched birdies with Kang at the 13th and 14th and then tied Kang for the lead again when Kang made bogey at the 15th. They took turns with the lead coming home after that, until Kang dropped a shot at the last.

“I got unlucky on the last hole, hit it in the fairway and end up in a patch of sand, and it plugged,” Kang said.

Korda was asked if she would seek any advice from her sister with Jessica also still in the mix.

“I just usually talk to my dad and mom about this,” Nelly said. “Jess is still right there on the leaderboard. I see her. But she'll definitely give me a piece of advice.”

The Kordas are quite the athletic family.

Nelly and Jessica’s parents were tennis stars. Their father, Petr, won the Australian Open in 1998. Their mother, Regina, was also world-class tennis player. Their younger brother, Sebastian, 17, won the Australian Open junior title in January on the 20th anniversary of Petr’s title.

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Storms halt Barbasol before Lincicome tees off

By Associated PressJuly 20, 2018, 11:29 pm

NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - Brittany Lincicome will have to wait until the weekend to resume her bid to make the cut in a PGA Tour event.

Overnight storms delayed the start of the second round Friday in the Barbasol Championship, and an afternoon thunderstorm suspended competition for good. The round will resume Saturday morning with much of the field still to play.

The second stoppage at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came 20 minutes before Lincicome's scheduled tee time.

Lincicome was near the bottom of the field after opening with a 6-over 78 on Thursday. The first LPGA player since Michelle Wie in 2008 to start a PGA Tour event, she needs a huge rebound to join Babe Zaharias (1945) as the only female players to make the cut.

Troy Merritt had the clubhouse lead at 15 under, following an opening 62 with a 67.

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Third-round tee times for the 147th Open

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 20, 2018, 9:05 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Eighteen major champions made the cut at The Open and will be playing the weekend at Carnoustie, including 60-year-old ageless wonder Bernhard Langer, and both major champs so far this year, Patrick Reed and Brooks Koepka.

Twenty-four-year-old Gavin Green will be first off solo Saturday at 4:15 a.m. ET. Reed and Rhys Enoch will follow along 10 minutes later.


Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods, both at even par for the tournament, six shots behind leaders Zach Johnson and Kevin Kisner, are in consecutive groups. Mickelson is playing with Austin Cook at 8:05 a.m. and Woods is with South Africa’s Shaun Norris at 8:15 a.m.

Jordan Spieth and Rickie Fowler, both three shots off the lead, are also in consecutive groups. Fowler is at 10 a.m. with Thorbjorn Olesen and Spieth is 10 minutes later with Kevin Chappell. Rory McIlroy, looking to win his first major since the 2014 PGA Championship, is at 10:40 a.m. with Xander Schauffele. McIlroy is two shots behind.

Johnson and Kisner are last off at 11 a.m.

4:15AM ET: Gavin Green

4:25AM ET: Rhys Enoch, Patrick Reed

4:35AM ET: Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Justin Rose

4:45AM ET: Yusaku Miyazato, Tyrrell Hatton

4:55AM ET: Ross Fisher, Keegan Bradley

5:05AM ET: Ryan Fox, Jason Dufner

5:15AM ET: Bryson DeChambeau, Henrik Stenson

5:25AM ET: Tom Lewis, Sam Locke (a)

5:35AM ET: Paul Casey, Chris Wood

5:45AM ET: Bernhard Langer, Rafa Cabrera Bello

6:00AM ET: Paul Dunne, Brett Rumford

6:10AM ET: Masahiro Kawamura, Shubhankar Sharma

6:20AM ET: Cameron Smith, Brendan Steele

6:30AM ET: Marc Leishman, Lee Westwood

6:40AM ET: Byeong Hun An, Kevin Na

6:50AM ET: Julian Suri, Adam Hadwin

7:00AM ET: Gary Woodland, Si-Woo Kim

7:10AM ET: Yuta Ikeda, Satoshi Kodaira

7:20AM ET: Marcus Kinhult, Thomas Pieters

7:30AM ET: Beau Hossler, Haotong Li

7:45AM ET: Cameron Davis, Sean Crocker

7:55AM ET: Louis Oosthuizen, Stewart Cink

8:05AM ET: Phil Mickeslon, Austin Cook

8:15AM ET: Tiger Woods, Shaun Norris

8:25AM ET: Lucas Herbert, Michael Kim

8:35AM ET: Jason Day, Francesco Molinari

8:45AM ET: Sung Kang, Webb Simpson

8:55AM ET: Patrick Cantlay, Eddie Pepperell

9:05AM ET: Matthew Southgate, Brooks Koepka

9:15AM ET: Kyle Stanley, Adam Scott

9:30AM ET: Charley Hoffman, Alex Noren

9:40AM ET: Ryan Moore, Brandon Stone

9:50AM ET: Luke List, Danny Willett

10:00AM ET: Thorbjorn Olesen, Rickie Fowler

10:10AM ET: Jordan Spieth, Kevin Chappell

10:20AM ET: Zander Lombard, Tony Finau

10:30AM ET: Matt Kuchar, Erik Van Rooyen

10:40AM ET: Rory McIlroy, Xander Schauffele

10:50AM ET: Pat Perez, Tommy Fleetwood

11:00AM ET: Kevin Kisner, Zach Johnson

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Facial hair Fowler's new good-luck charm

By Rex HoggardJuly 20, 2018, 8:12 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Before, during and after the Fourth of July, Rickie Fowler missed a few appointments with his razor.

He arrived in the United Kingdom for last week’s Scottish Open still unshaved and he tied for sixth place. Fowler, like most golfers, can give in to superstition, so he's decided to keep the caveman look going for this week’s Open Championship.

“There could be some variations,” he smiled following his round on Friday at Carnoustie.


Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


At this rate, he may never shave again. Fowler followed an opening 70 with a 69 on Friday to move into a tie for 11th place, just three strokes off the lead.

Fowler also has some friendly competition in the beard department, with his roommate this week Justin Thomas also going for the rugged look.

“I think he kind of followed my lead in a way. I think he ended up at home, and he had a little bit of scruff going. It's just fun,” Fowler said. “We mess around with it. Obviously, not taking it too seriously. But like I said, ended up playing halfway decent last week, so I couldn't really shave it off going into this week.”

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Spieth (67) rebounds from tough Round 1 finish

By Ryan LavnerJuly 20, 2018, 7:55 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Guess whose putter is starting to heat up again at a major?

Even with a few wayward shots Friday at Carnoustie, Jordan Spieth made a significant climb up the leaderboard in the second round, firing a 4-under 67 to move just three shots off the lead.

Spieth showed his trademark grit in bouncing back from a rough finish Thursday, when he mis-clubbed on the 15th hole, leading to a double bogey, and ended up playing the last four holes in 4 over.

“I don’t know if I actually regrouped,” he said. “It more kind of fires me up a little.”


Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


Spieth missed more than half of his fairways in the second round, but he was able to play his approach shots from the proper side of the hole. Sure, he “stole a few,” particularly with unlikely birdies on Nos. 10 and 11 after errant drives, but he took advantage and put himself in position to defend his claret jug.

Spieth needed only 25 putts in the second round, and he credited a post-round adjustment Thursday for the improvement. The tweak allows his arms to do more of the work in his stroke, and he said he felt more confident on the greens.

“It’s come a long way in the last few months, no doubt,” he said.

More than anything, Spieth was relieved not to have to play “cut-line golf” on Friday, like he’s done each start since his spirited run at the Masters.

“I know that my swing isn’t exactly where I want it to be; it’s nowhere near where it was at Birkdale,” he said. “But the short game is on point, and the swing is working in the right direction to get the confidence back.”