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Ko leads Marathon Classic field

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 15/07/2016

NZ's Lydia Ko watches her drive on the fifth hole during the second round of the Marathon Classic at Highland Meadows Golf Club on July 15, 2016 in Ohio. © Gregory Shamus/Getty Images NZ's Lydia Ko watches her drive on the fifth hole during the second round of the Marathon Classic at Highland Meadows Golf Club on July 15, 2016 in Ohio.

World No.1 Lydia Ko has eased into a share of the lead at the halfway stage of the Marathon Classic in Ohio.

The New Zealand 19-year-old fired six birdies in her five-under 66, with her only blemish a bogey at the par-four 11th.

She was happy with her tally, particularly given the challenging conditions at the Highland Meadows Golf Club in Sylvania.

"In this wind and in the conditions, I feel like my score is a pretty solid one this morning," she said. "I think I had few more looks for birdies and a few that decided to drop. I had a few that were so close to going in and didn't drop - I felt like I did leave a few out there."

Ko's opening 68 had left her in a share of seventh on day one, two shots off the pace set by South Koreans Hyo Joo Kim and Mirim Lee, along with Japan's Haru Nomura.

Kim's second-round 68 was enough to earn a share of the lead with Ko, while Nomura slipped to a share of eighth after carding an even-par 71 and Lee's one-under 70 left her in a tie for fifth with two others.

Ko, who won the Marathon Classic two years ago, is coming off a third placing at last week's US Women's Open in California, where she blew a lead through 54 holes which denied her a third major title.

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