Buhai opens with level-par in HSBC Women’s World Championship

Ashleigh Buhai opened with a level-par 72 on Thursday in the first round of the LPGA Tour’s HSBC Women’s World Championship in Singapore to take up a share of 40th position in the limited 69-player tournament.

She finds herself seven shots off the lead set by Inbee Park’s eight-under 64, and the South Korean has a two-stroke edge over countrywoman Hee Young Park. Five players were in a share of third on five-under, including Germany’s Sophia Popov.

Buhai had six birdies and six bogeys in her round. She started with a bogey on the first, and then dropped another shot on the fourth. By the sixth, she had got things back to level-pegging with successive birdies, but she gave up two more shots to par on the eighth and the ninth.

A bogey on the 11th was followed by three birdies on 13, 15 and 16, before she closed out with a bogey on 17 and a birdie on 18.

It was a round in which her putting frustrated her efforts, as she took 31 putts in her round. She also could have been better when approaching the greens, as she hit just 13 of 18 in regulation.

Inbee was flawless, carding nines of 32 on each side. “I hit a lot of great shots but probably left myself a lot of 10 to 15-footers, and I was able to make most of them, which has been the difference this year,” said Park. “You know, holing putts when you need to hole, especially 10to 15-footers, so that percentage the last few years wasn’t that great but this year has been a little better. So I think that really paid off today.”

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