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October 20, 2019

Korda in front at Shanghai as Henderson struggles


October 20, 2019

SHANGHAI: Jessica Korda edged in front while overnight leader Brooke Henderson struggled through a lacklustre third day of the Buick LPGA Shanghai on Saturday.

The 26-year-old finished play with eight birdies and two bogies to finish at 15 under for the $2.1 million tournament after breaking ahead of defending champ and fellow American Danielle Kang on the final hole.

“There were birdies on top of birdies just to try to stay in and keep the lead,” Korda said. “Yeah, it was a fun day. It was really fun.”

Henderson aced the par-three second hole at Friday’s halfway mark to equal the course record 64 but blew her two stroke lead over Korda with a woeful start, scoring two over par by the fourth hole.

An eagle on the 10th kept the Canadian in contention but she finished with a disappointing double bogey when her drive narrowly missed the water hazard, leaving her five off the lead.

Kang overcame two consecutive bogies at the start of her run to match Korda at six under for the day, looking visibly relieved after making par on the third from the sand trap.

It was the start of a dream run for Kang, who narrowly missed an eagle on the 14th after a gravity-defying shot out of the bunker. “I know it was a tad of a slow start, but I knew that I was hitting it well, putting well,” she said.

She took the lead after finishing the par-five 17th in three strokes before Korda slid in front with an eagle on the last hole. Kang celebrates her birthday on Sunday and said she will take an aggressive approach in her bid to snare another win at the Shanghai tournament, now in its second year.

Japan´s Nasa Hataoka kept her hopes alive to finish the day at five under.

The world number four and first round joint leader had slipped to seven off the pace by the halfway mark with a one over par 73 on Friday. But top-ranked woman golfer Ko Jin-young’s hopes have been dashed with the South Korean sitting nine shots off the lead in equal eighth.

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