Golf

Kanphanitnan leads HSBC Women’s World C’ship qualifiers

Thai golfer Kanphanitnan Muangkhumsakul enters the final round of the two-day HSBC Women's World Championship regional qualifying tournament today with a three-shot lead over Singapore's Amanda Tan.

Kanphanitnan, 20, got off to a shaky start yesterday, making a bogey on the first hole, but regained her composure and mixed five birdies with one bogey on the final hole for a three-under 69 at the Sentosa Golf Club's New Tanjong Course.

She said: "After the bogey on the first hole, I thought maybe I won't play well today. But I just tried to par the next few holes.

"I thought it's all right if I play +1 today, but it ended up being a good round for me in the end.

"I'll focus on my game tomorrow and it's fine if I don't win as I would have done my best. If I score under and don't win, it's fine with me."

Tan, 19, ended the first round with an even-par 72 and hopes to "eliminate the silly mistakes" in the second round.

"Overall, I thought I played OK and hopefully the same for tomorrow," said Tan, who turned professional at the start of 2017.

"Best if I can go under par tomorrow but I don't think I will be doing anything different from today, except to eliminate the silly mistakes and hopefully make some putts."

All eyes had been on Thailand's Atthaya Thitikul who finished in the top 10 at last year's HSBC Women's World Championship, but she carded a three-over 75 and has an uphill task.

The winner will qualify for the HSBC Women's World Championship from Feb 28-March 3 at the same venue, where a world-class field will be waiting.

Defending champion Michelle Wie, world No. 1 Ariya Jutanugarn and the top 20 players have confirmed their attendance in Singapore.

Golf