Yang Mei, Taiwan (SportsNetwork.com) - Defending champion Suzann Pettersen
shot 4-under-par 68 on Thursday to grab a 3-stroke lead through the opening
round of the LPGA Taiwan Championship
Pettersen, who is ranked second in the world, countered a pair of bogeys with
six birdies at Sunrise Golf & Country Club.
"It was a tough day out there, conditions were not great," said Pettersen.
"I've played this course in nicer conditions. Once the rain stopped, the wind
picked up, so I mean, it's your pick, if you want rain or you want wind."
Caroline Hedwall, Alison Walshe, Karine Icher and Irene Cho carded matching 1-
under 71s to snare a share of second place.
Paula Creamer highlights a group of eight players tied for sixth place at
Hometown favorite Yani Tseng, who won this event in 2011, stumbled to an
opening-round 76. The former world No. 1 is tied for 47th place.
Pettersen opened with a par at the first and a bogey at the second, but she
recovered with back-to-back birdies from the fifth to turn at 1-under.
From there, Pettersen emerged from a crowded leaderboard with a run of three
consecutive birdies from the 10th to reach 4-under.
Pettersen added another birdie at the 15th, but she gave that shot back at the
par-3 16th, then parred out to grab the first-round lead at 4-under.
"I don't really feel comfortable around this place because the wind is all
over, but I feel pretty good with my game," admitted Pettersen. "I feel my
ball-striking is pretty much where I want it to be. I've got to just be very
clear on what I'm trying to do and step up and do it. I hit some great
approaches on the back and I hit some good ones on the front."
Tseng has struggled to return to her former perch atop the women's rankings,
as she has posted only has four top-10 finishes on tour this season.
Thursday's round at Sunrise Golf & Country Club featured six bogeys against a
pair of birdies for the local favorite.
NOTES: Pettersen has finished in the top seven in seven straight tournaments
and nine of the last 10, including two victories ... Tseng has not won since
the 2012 Kia Classic ... World No. 1 Inbee Park is not competing in this event
... Park, Pettersen and Stacy Lewis are the only players with at least three
wins on the season.
The Sports Network