Na Yeon Choi/ Benny Sieu, US Presswire
South Korean Na Yeon Choi had one of the best rounds in U.S. Women’s Open history, taking control of the tournament with a masterclass round of 7-under par, 65 in the third round of The U.S. Womens Open at Blackwolf Run in Kohler Wisconsin on Saturdays third round. With a six shot lead over her countrywoman Amy Yang Na Yeon really takes an unassailable lead into Sunday’s final round. All but six of this years field are currently over par for the tournament, the best placed American is Lexi Thompson at -1 under par and a full seven shots adrift of the leader.
With Saturday’s winds gusting to 30 mph, it’s unpredictability sent scores soaring, and precarious pin placements lowered expectations for low scores . Choi appeared unruffled by the gusting winds, opening with birdies on her first two holes and then went on to make five more in a six-hole span starting on the seventh hole and finishing with eight birdies, against a lone bogey. Na Yeon was obviously very happy with her round;
“I had a really good feeling about my swing, I think I hit a lot of good shots. I think all 14 of my clubs worked very well. I can’t believe I got eight birdies today, but I am very happy. I thought today would be very difficult because a lot of wind was blowing. But you know, I started with two birdies, so I had good vibes from there. I had confidence until the last hole, and I think, you know, I had good patience. So that’s why I had a good round today. I will not change anything, I will just play my game. I know what I have to do, and I know what I can control. I cannot control winning. I can’t control my score, so I just will do my best and just hit one shot at a time. I hope to get good warm-up in the morning and just go out there and, like today, have fun with my caddie.”
Na Yeon’s playing partner, Nicole Castrale was left in awe as Na Yeon cruised along;
“Hats off to her. It was one of the best rounds I’ve ever seen, I’ve seen some good ones out here. It was more kind of funny. I made back-to-back birdies on 11 to 12, and I still didn’t have the tee. It is what it is. I think I finally got the tee on 16. At least I got it once. She putted great. I think she had 11 putts in the first nine holes. So obviously you have to putt well out here with the greens being like that. I didn’t think it was out there, but I was proven wrong. It was clearly there. But she played pretty much perfect all day.”
Kiwi Lydia Ko, at 15 years of age is the world’s number amateur player, suffered a disappointing third round, along with just about everyone else. Lydia shot a third round 79 to be at +7 over par for the tournament, tied for 41st place.