With the afternoon groups still on the par-73 Commonwealth Golf Course in the ISPS HANDA Australian Women's Open, Ji-Yai Shin has taken a 1-shot lead on Rebecca Coakley and a 2-shot lead on Nikki Campbell and Anne-Lise Caudal into the clubhouse thanks to a bogey-free 67. Early in her round, the world #1 made a statement by birdieing 3 holes in a row on the back, then followed them up with birdies in 3 of her last 5 holes on the front, including back-to-back birdies to close out her round.
To give you a sense of how great Shin's round was, keep in mind that Lexi Thompson and Sarah Kemp opened with 78s, Irene Cho with a 77, Louise Stahle and Sarah Oh with 76s, Lorie Kane with a 75, and Caroline Hedwall and Alison Walshe with 74s. Even those who played well by and large failed to break 70, such as Karen Stupples and Tiffany Joh at -3, Gwladys Nocera at -2, Karrie Webb, Karine Icher, Louise Friberg, Maria Hernandez, Cindy LaCrosse, and Hannah Jun at -1, and Stacy Lewis, Lee-Anne Pace, Tamie Durdin, Reilley Rabkin, Dewi Claire Schreefel, and Lydia Ko at E.
With the likes of Ya Ni Tseng, Laura Davies, So Yeon Ryu, Eun-Hee Ji, Gwladys Nocera, Melissa Reid, Mariajo Uribe, Guilia Sergas, Anja Monke, and Frances Bondad already under par early in their rounds, and Katherine Hull, Christina Kim, Lindsey Wright, Christel Boeljeon, and Jennifer Song off to solid starts, it's way too soon to tell whether the leader in the clubhouse will end up being the 1st-round leader. But I wouldn't be surprised if nobody matches Shin's start to the Australian Women's Open.