Date: February 22, 2018
Author: Mark Hayes

Aussies can’t find Singapore stride

Thailand’s Atthaya Thitikul maintained a share of the Women’s Amateur Asia Pacific Championship lead today, but a familiar pack is now firmly on the chase in Sinagpore.

On a day when the six-strong Australian contingent again struggle to make inroads on the leaderboard, the Thai 15-year-old ceded the lead midway through the second round, but struck back with two late birdies to regain the halfway lead alongside Yunji Jeong.

But there’s suddenly a whole host of Korean – and other challengers – on Thitikul’s tail after she carded an even-par 71 at the New Tanjong course at Sentosa to stay at six under.

Jeong led the Korean retaliation with her 67 enough to share the lead, while dual Australian Amateur Championship runner-up Ayean Cho (68) joined Lois Kaye Go (67), of the Philippines, at five under in the chase.

Pressing further the Korean case are Hae-ran Ryu (70) and Yujeong Son (68), both at four under.

The Australian challenge, however, is yet to materialise.

Queenslander Kirsty Hodgkins remains in a share of 27th, but her 75 dropped her to four over in total and 10 shots from the leaders.

Another Queenslander, Robyn Choi, had been on the rise until a couple of late bogeys dropped her to five over after her own 75.

Victorian Julienne Soo fought valiantly after an early double-bogey and her four birdies were vital to an even-par 71 that kept her hopes alive at seven over.

Grace Kim (76), of New South Wales, and Becky Kay (72), of Queensland, finished on the cut number at eight over and will play again tomorrow, but the same won’t apply for Victorian Alizza Hetherington who paid a heavy price for a late bogey that dropped her to nine over after a 77.