Wednesday, February 23, 2011

HSBC Women's Champions Thursday Pairings

They're going off the front and back in threesomes for the 1st round of the HSBC Women's Champions. Here are the 15 pairings I'm most interested in following on Thursday (virtually, that is):

10:19 am, 1st tee: Ji-Yai Shin, Ai Miyazato, Michelle Wie. Wie exceeded expectations in Thailand while Shin and Miyazato struggled. With an island green on a par 3 and plenty of water near many other greens at Tanah Merah, we'll see exactly what kind of shape their ball-striking and confidence are in this week.

10:08 am, 1st tee: Ya Ni Tseng, Cristie Kerr, Na Yeon Choi. Tseng is on an impressive roll, going for her 5th win in 5 worldwide starts and 2nd-straight LPGA victory in Singapore, while Kerr and Choi are hoping they scraped off lots of rust in Thailand.

9:57 am, 1st tee: In-Kyung Kim, Paula Creamer, Karrie Webb. They all showed signs of brilliance in Thailand, but their hot streaks were surrounded by lots of lukewarm play. Can they turn up the heat in Singapore?

9:13 am, 1st tee: Inbee Park, Eun-Hee Ji, Christabel Goh [a]: Given how well amateurs like Lydia Ko, Cecelia Cho, Ashley Ona, and Ariya Jutanugarn have been playing early in the season, the 2 U.S. Women's Open champions in this threesome had better bring their A-games!

10:30 am, 1st tee: Amy Yang, Stacy Lewis, M.J. Hur. Don't be surprised if the winner comes from this pairing. Yang and Lewis are on the verge of breaking through into the game's super-elite, while Hur is coming off a top 10 in Thailand and faced down none other than Suzann Pettersen for her 1st career LPGA win.

9:46 am, 1st tee: Suzann Pettersen, Juli Inkster, Momoko Ueda. They all showed signs of life in Thailand, but all left for Singapore with sour tastes in their mouth. Can they put themselves into contention this week and stay there?

9:35 am, 1st tee: Morgan Pressel, Katherine Hull, Jimin Kang. Hull's top 20 in Thailand was disappointing given how much good golf she'd already been playing in 2011, whereas Pressel's and Kang's barely getting into the top 40 there is just plain disappointing. Can they all bounce back in Singapore?

9:57 am, 10th tee: Sun Young Yoo, Vicky Hurst, Stacy Prammanasudh. Yoo is sneaky good, Hurst has loads of talent and it's about time she started realizing her vast potential, and Stacy P, like Hurst, is gunning for a Solheim Cup berth.

10:08 am, 10th tee: Mika Miyazato, Candie Kung, Brittany Lang. The "other Miyazato" is on the verge of breaking through, while Kung and Lang are trying to find the games that had them among the best female golfers on the planet not that long ago.

9:35 am, 10th tee: Angela Stanford, Seon Hwa Lee, Kyeong Bae. Another trio looking to get their games on the right track this week.

9:46 am, 10th tee: Kristy McPherson, Azahara Munoz, Karen Stupples. There's tons of talent in this pairing, but McPherson is coming off elbow surgery, Munoz is trying to avoid a sophomore jinx, and Stupples is trying to find her way out of the golfing wilderness.

8:40 am, 10th tee: Maria Hjorth, Hee-Won Han, Amanda Blumenherst. They each had 1 disastrous round in Thailand. Only problem is, there's even more opportunities to make big numbers in Singapore. But at least their scorecards should be entertaining to watch--if you like roller coasters, that is.

8:52 am, 1st tee: Sophie Gustafson, Gwladys Nocera, Jessica Korda. Look for more roller-coaster scorecards from these bombers!

8:40 am, 1st tee: Chie Arimura, Brittany Lincicome, Haeji Kang. Let's see how precision players Arimura and Kang hang in there with the bombs-away Lincicome at Tanah Merah. My guess is, pretty darn well.

9:24 am, 1st tee: Anna Nordqvist, Beatriz Recari, Natalie Gulbis. They played pretty solid golf at Thailand except for 1 bad round each. I'd love to see them play well enough to get plenty of air time in Singapore!

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