The Robert Trent Jones London Hunt and Country Club was soft today and some of the best female golfers in the world took full advantage during the 1st round of the Canadian Pacific Women's Open. Na Yeon Choi set the pace in the morning with a 64 that was sparked by 5 birdies in a row as she started the front (her back). But So Yeon Ryu topped her in the afternoon with a bogey-free 63 that included an emphatic 30 on the back 9.
But, incredibly, these fantastic rounds failed to separate Ryu and Choi from a good portion of the field. Anna Nordqvist's bogey-free 65, 66s by 2-time Wegmans LPGA Championship winner Inbee Park, Team Spain leader Azahara Munoz, 2-time U.S. Women's Amateur champion Danielle Kang, and rookie Xi Yu Lin, 67s by Laura Davies, Cristie Kerr, Caroline Masson, Lindsey Wright, Mi Hyang Lee, and Jennifer Kirby, and 68s by Brittany Lang, Belen Mozo, Julieta Granada, Harukyo Nomura, Pernilla Lindberg, and Marina Alex mean that there are actually 19 golfers within 5 shots of the lead.
And with the likes of Karrie Webb, Laura Diaz, Suzann Pettersen, Ya Ni Tseng, Mirim Lee, and Jane Park at -3, 2-time defending champion Lydia Ko, Ai Miyazato, Morgan Pressel, In-Kyung Kim, Lexi Thompson, Jessica Korda, Lizette Salas, and Jenny Shin at -2, and Stacy Lewis, Paula Creamer, Brittany Lincicome, Hee Young Park, Charley Hull, and Stephanie Meadow at -1, we actually have 80 golfers under par after 18 holes.
Big names in danger of missing the cut, therefore, include Ariya Jutanugarn (79), Katherine Kirk (77), Gerina Piller (75), Moriya Jutanugarn (75), Mina Harigae (75), Shanshan Feng (74), Caroline Hedwall (74), Tiffany Joh (74), Moira Dunn (74), Beatriz Recari (73), Sandra Gal (73), Chella Choi (73), Eun-Hee Ji (73), Mika Miyazato (73), Angela Stanford (72), Amy Yang (72), Meena Lee (72), Jodi Ewart Shadoff (72), and Chie Arimura (72).
But given that any of these golfers are capable of knocking out a round in the mid-60s or even low 60s, I expect the leaderboard at the end of the day tomorrow to be quite different than it turned out to be today!