ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open 2018. J.Y. Flying High.

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J.Y. Jin Young Ko, from South Korea is flying high at the top of the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open for the third straight day at Kooyonga Golf Club in Australia.

 ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open.

Jin Young Ko / getty

J.Y. carded a third round -1 under par 71 to stay on top of the  ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open leaderboard with a tournament total of -11 under par.

Hannah Green, Australia, is in second place, four shots back at -7 under par, she scored the low round of the day, -6 under 66, which kept herself and the locals happy;

“It was a good round today, I was very pleased with my ball striking today.”

“I missed a few greens and the other two I was putting off the edge, so the ball striking was there.”

“It wasn’t there yesterday, and I did some work in the afternoon, so I’m glad it was more tight.”

Hyejin Choi, -2 under 70 and Sung Young Yoo, even par 72 today, both share third spot at -6 under par, and both ladies are from South Korea.

Best placed Ladies European Tour player is Karine Icher, France, -2 under 70 today, she is tied in a group at -4 under, which includes the top USA lady Mo Martin, who carded an even par 72 in her third round.

Jenny Haglund, Sweden, drove away with a brand-new Hyundai Genesis G80 after a hole-in-one at the par three 14th hole;

e ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open

Jenny Haglund and her Hyundai Genesis G80 / getty

“I just aimed right at the pin and it was just how I wanted to hit it.”

“I started a little bit right and then drawing a bit left against the wind which held it up a little and then it landed and rolled.”

“Then the crowd was just cheering and standing up. It was a great experience. I couldn’t see it, but I knew when the crowd went crazy.”

There is not much doubt who will win this tournament, but it will be interesting how the rest of the leaderboard pans out tomorrow.

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Casey & Dougherty, the come back boys.

The Cadillac Championship was Paul Casey’s first tournament after dislocating his right shoulder snowboarding on Christmas Eve. It was most memorable for his hole in one on the par 3 15th. As Paul walked up to the 15th hole, he made a bet with his caddie, Craig Connelly, the portly Scot they call ‘Weeman.’ Paul bet Craig that if he made a hole-in-one on No. 15, he would split the prize, down the middle, with Connelly. Casey had just double bogeyed No. 12 and followed that with a bogey on No. 14, so the expectations were pretty low. They shook hands to seal the bet and Connelly handed Casey an 8-iron. Paul didn’t see the ball go in, but the exuberant celebration of his caddy let him know it was a hole-in-one. Paul said;

“I kinda turned away, thinking I hope that just misses, Craig went bananas. In a moment of disappointment I thought I’d have to give him some money.”

Paul’s disappointment suddenly transferred to Connelly a few seconds later. As Craig jumped around the tee box in glee, thinking he was good for half the value of a luxury car, a rules official came over and told Casey that there was no prize for an ace at No. 15, you’d have to ace No. 13 to win a car. Casey joked;

“I’ve never been so relieved in my life, I’ve never wanted to not make a hole in one when the ball is that good. I’ve never enjoyed not winning a car so much. With the money he’s made, he can buy his own car.”

Paul was satisfied with his performance, after his long self induced lay-off.

The other player returning to golf is Nick Dougherty, playing on the Challenge tour at Pacific Rubiales Colombia Classic. Nick was leading the tournament after three rounds, but faltered on the last round, finishing tied for ninth place. A good result on his first outing on his comeback trail.

Good luck to both boys, and I hope their improvement continues.


Joburg Open 2nd Round

Highlight of the Joburg second round was Englishman Richard Finch firing a hole in one at the par three 12th. Strangely enough he was not too pleased to achieve the feat, if it had come during the last round it would have earned Richard a million rand for the effort. Finch’s hole-in-one helped him into a share of the lead at the Joburg Open, sharing that position with Robert Rock and  George Coetzee at the tough Royal Johannesburg and Kensington East Course.

Finch said of his hole in one, “On 12 I looked at the back of the tee and read the board which said there was a million rand available for a hole-in-one in the final round. As my shot landed I turned around and said ‘Oh no!’ because I had hit it on the perfect line.”  “Some of Darren Fichardt’s family and friends were at the green and they started cheering, so it was clear it had gone in.” “I made one at Humewood a few years ago during the SA Open. It was sponsored by South African Airways, so I won a million air miles, which was nice.”

Richard was also delighted with his second round effort, “Starting today at five-under-par was interesting, a few birdies and you’re right up there amongst the lead, but a couple of bogeys and you miss the cut. But I’m delighted with today, I thought some of the pins were really tucked away, so I just tried to be sensible and get it on to the green to give myself a chance. I managed to roll a few in, which was good,”

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