Friday, October 25, 2013
Paced by ace, Pettersen widens lead in Taiwan
YANGMEI, Taiwan -- Suzann Pettersen had a hole-in-one and increased her lead to five strokes Friday after the second round of the LPGA Taiwan Championship.
The defending champion aced the 133-yard second hole with a pitching wedge and finished with a 3-under 69 in swirling wind conditions to reach 7 under at Sunrise Golf and Country Club.
"I called the shot. I hit it exactly how I wanted and was fortunate enough that I had a good break," the Norwegian star said. "It was a very good shot. It's nice to get a hole in one when you actually call the shot in advance and then pull the trigger."
The second-ranked Pettersen was the only player in the 78-player field to break par in each round.
"Today was a really tough day," Pettersen said. "The wind got stronger and stronger and it's definitely not easy out there. The wind and the conditions test every aspect of the game. I mean, even an 80-yard shot, it's challenging enough to control the spin and know what the ball is going to do. Standing over putts, you feel the wind on the body. It's a mental test out there but it's a fun challenge. I've been playing really solid golf, and I'm excited to be where I'm at after two days."
She has three LPGA Tour victories this year, winning in Portland, Ore., and France in consecutive starts last month, and also won a Ladies European Tour event this year in China.
"I think I'm just getting to the point in my career that I'd better just enjoy what I do," Pettersen said. "I'm tough enough on myself that, I mean, I can grind it out on the course and kind of be focused. But I'm trying to enjoy this ride, because I guess I'm maturing and you actually realize that you are fortunate to do what you do."
South Korea's Sun Young Yoo of South Korea and Spain's Carlota Ciganda were tied for second. Yoo had a 69, and Ciganda shot 70.
"I knew it was going to be windy today, so I just focused on where I want to start the ball, instead of focusing to getting close to the pin," Yoo said.
Taiwanese star Yani Tseng, the 2011 winner, followed her opening 76 with a 78 to drop 17 strokes back. Winless in 41 LPGA Tour since the 2012 Kia Classic, she has tumbled from first to 25th in the world ranking in seven months.