L.E.T. Evian Championship. Hyo-Joo Kim Back in Pole Position.

White Dragon GolfThe Evian Championship

Hyo-Joo Kim is back in pole position at the Evian Championship, on the Evian Resort Golf Course in France.

Evian Championship

Hyo-Joo Kim / Getty Images

A third round of +1 over par in tough conditions gives Korean Hyo-Joo a one shot lead with a tournament total of -8 under par, going into the final round.

Her interpreter revealed her state of mind;

“I was calm, but if I win, I will get excited.”

The seven-time major champion Karrie Webb is in second place, just one shot behind the leader at -7 under par. Karrie carded a -1 under par third round and spoke about the conditions

“Didn’t hit it very good early, well, I started off with a birdie.  Two good swings down the first. Struggled a little bit there through the middle of the front nine.  Really just hung in there.  The conditions were challenging today with the breeze.”

“There are some really tough shots coming in.  You know, 16, that was playing quite challenging today to pick the right club, and you got to keep it right of the hole.  It was a tough two-putt even from where I hit it.”

“So challenging finish, but I did a really good job and finished the last four in two under.  That really made my round.”

“Just happy to be in this position.  It’s been a while.  Since the start of the year really that I’ve had a legitimate chance to win a tournament. So I feel good about where I’ve put myself.  Proud of my scrambling the last couple days.  Hopefully I’ve got a bit more of those in me tomorrow.”

Mi Jung Hur also had a +1 over par 72 and sits in third place for the tournament at -6 under par. Mi Jung added to comments on how tough the 16th was today;

“I had a good round all day long except the No. 16. I’m satisfied with this round because the pin positions were so tough all day long.”

The overnight leader Brittany Lincicome faded away, dropping four shots off the lead after a +6 over par third round of 77, which featured two double bogeys and a triple bogey within the first seven holes.

 

L.E.T. Omega Dubai Ladies Masters. It’s Still Stacy.

Omega Dubai Ladies Masters

It is still Stacy Lewis at the top of the leaderboard in the Omega Dubai Ladies Masters tournament at the end of day three.

Stacy Lewis / Getty

Stacy carded a third round of -2 under par 70 on the Majlis Course at Emirates Golf Club, to take a two-stroke lead into the final round of the Omega Dubai Ladies Masters, with her -11 under par total.

Stacy said it was always hard to follow a good round of 65 with another really good round;

“It’s always hard to follow up a day like I had yesterday, especially on the greens.  It was the kind of day that could have been worse and it could have been better.  But, you know, overall, I’m right where I need to be going into tomorrow. I just didn’t hit it quite as close; didn’t have as many good opportunities at birdie.  But still hit a ton of greens and if I can just get a couple more putts to fall early tomorrow, then I think I’ll be in a good place.”

Pornanong Phatlum is in second place, she had a third round of -3 under par 69 for her tournament total of -9 under par and said that she was aiming to play with Stacy in the last group on Sunday.

There are three ladies tied in third place, although they are a long way back of Stacy, at -6 under par for the tournament. They are Diana Luna, Vikki Laing and Carlota Ciganda, Carlota said she missed a few putts today;

“I don’t think I played that bad.  I just missed a few putts.  I hit 35 putts.  It was tough, a few 3‑putts out there.  And then 1‑over on the par 5s, and I was on each of them in two on the greens.  There is one more day tomorrow, I will try my best.”

Vikki chipped in for eagle on the third hole which set her up for another solid round;

 “I’m happy with the way it went today.  I had a few chances out there for birdie, hit a lot of fairways, hit a lot of greens.  Just tried to stay patient and made some putts and made a nice eagle, too, which was nice, chipped in.  So that always helps. I’d have bit your hand off if you had offered me this at the beginning of the week.  I’m delighted to be here and playing well and looking forward to tomorrow.”

Diana is full of confidence;

“I’m very confident,  I’m playing very well.  I made a few mistakes but always recovered well .  So I think I’m going to have a good fun tomorrow.”

South Africa’s Connie Chen produced the shot of the day when she aced the 160-yard par-3, 15th, using a six iron, a perfect tee shot which won her a gleaming Mercedes Benz E-400 Convertible worth US$70,000, almost on a par with the tournament’s second place prize money.

 

Kiwi Lydia Ko to play in US Open.

Lydia Ko at NSW Open Victory/ perthnow.com.au

World No 1 amateur Lydia Ko her Major debut at the US Open on Thursday. Lydia, a Korean-born Kiwi, who became the youngest winner in professional golf when she won the NSW Open, is only the second amateur from New Zealand to play the US Open after Olivia Hartley played in 1999.  She just loves mixing with and playing against the best players in the world.

” Being around and playing with the world’s best is overwhelming. Words can’t explain how awesome it is. I got an autograph from Michelle Wie and also Annika Sorenstam.”

In practice Lydia played alongside Australian Katherine Hull and Japan’s Mika Miyazato, and reports she has a good understanding of the course;

“It is quite a long course. The fairways are quite wide but it has hazards in the areas where the drives would go. Even the short holes are not easy. Being able to play the Open is such an honor. Even a few of the pros are unable to play but to be able to play still as an amateur it makes it more exciting. Seeing the environment and the set-up of the tournament, I’m becoming more and more excited to play along with the elite players on tour.”

Lydia is determined to make the cut, and has prepared well;

“The weather is in the high 30s, which is hotter than normal, but everyone is playing in the same weather, so I’m getting used to it, even though the water I put in gets sweated out the same amount. I have made a good plan with my caddie. I am confident going into the tournament as I have practiced really hard in New Zealand and also am well prepared. The only thing I can do now is try my best.”

 

Christmas hangover

I have to admit to feeling a little sluggish this morning, spent a lovely Christmas day with friends and needed no rocking when I finally fell into bed. But, I am up bright and breezy this morning and am heading out to the links to tee it up at 0840. My friend and great golfing adversary Capt Tim has challenged me to a round, winner takes all.

Talking of winners taking all I have read about a company call Debitsuccess, they will pay your annual green fee and let you pay it back in installments, sounds like that could end up costing us golfers even more, I could not find out what the interest rates are, so if you are thinking of participating in this, remember the saying, buyer beware.

Meet Indian Golf’s Sharapova

Meet Sharmila Nicolett, one of the few professional women golfers in India gave up scholarships to take up her love for golf and shine on the golf course.

Sharmila finished tied 22nd at the Indian Womens open, having a bad time with the putter. She shot a -4 for the last round showing that the talent is there, she just needs more experience.

“If not for my three-putts on the first two days, I would probably have finished in the top-5,” she said later.

Sharmila has announced her desire to travel and will join the European Q-School in Spain in January.