Friday, November 12, 2010

Ito-En Ladies Friday: Miki Saiki and Sakura Yokomine Alone Under 70

Miki Saiki stayed hot from last week's Mizuno Classic, firing 9 birdies in the 1st round of the Ito-En Ladies for a 67, but ended up with only a 1-stroke lead on Sakura Yokomine, who made 6 birdies of her own. Most other players found birdies harder to come by, however, as nobody else in the field broke 70 and only 12 golfers shot sub-par rounds. Late charges by Na-Ri Kim and Inbee Park brought them within 3 of Saiki, while money-list leader Sun-Ju Ahn stayed within striking distance at 4 back. Teresa Lu, fighting to keep her JLPGA card for 2011, was -3 through her 1st 10 holes, and -2 with 2 to play, but finished bogey-double on the par-4 8th and 9th holes to drop 6 behind with Yuri Fudoh and Momoko Ueda.

Here's how the leaders and notables stand heading into the weekend:

1st/-5 Miki Saiki (67)
2nd/-4 Sakura Yokomine (68)
T3/-2 Inbee Park, Na-Ri Kim, Na-Ri Lee (70)
T6/-1 Sun-Ju Ahn, Mie Nakata, Mayu Hattori, Hiromi Mogi, Yumiko Yoshida, Natsu Nagai, Mikiyo Nishizuka (71)

T13/E Mi-Jeong Jeon, Bo-Bae Song, Hyun-Ju Shin, Asako Fujimoto, Kaori Aoyama, Chieko Amanuma (72)
T22/+1 Yuri Fudoh, Momoko Ueda, Teresa Lu, Eun-A Lim, Erina Hara, Yuki Ichinose (73)
T30/+2 Shiho Oyama, Yukari Baba, Rui Kitada, Nikki Campbell, Ayako Uehara, Hiromi Takesue, Tamie Durdin, So-Hee Kim (74)
T46/+3 Ji-Hee Lee, Rikako Morita (75)
T53/+4 Chie Arimura, Saiki Fujita, Ji-Woo Lee, Maiko Wakabayashi (76)
T62/+5 Akane Iijima, Yun-Jye Wei (77)
T68/+6 Jae-Hee Bae, Harukyo Nomura [a] (78)
T77/+7 Esther Lee (79)
T84/+8 Yuko Mitsuka, Ah-Reum Hwang, Li-Ying Ye (80)
WD Young Kim

As you can see, many players high up the JLPGA money list struggled greatly today. This week is a great opportunity for Yokomine and Ahn to further distinguish themselves from the rest of the JLPGA, for Park to leapfrog a bunch of JLPGA regulars, and for several others to turn good seasons into great ones. Let's see who takes advantage over the next 36 holes!

[Update 1 (3:24 pm): Check out HappyFan on the appeal of the JLPGA to Korean players.]

No comments: