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Park leads, Lydia Ko lurks in Singapore

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 3/03/2017

Lydia Ko of New Zealand hits her tee shot on the second hole during the first round of the HSBC Women's Champions on the Tanjong Course at Sentosa Golf Club on March 2, 2017 in Singapore. © Scott Halleran/Getty Images Lydia Ko of New Zealand hits her tee shot on the second hole during the first round of the HSBC Women's Champions on the Tanjong Course at Sentosa Golf Club on March 2, 2017 in Singapore. South Korea's Inbee Park leads the way after the second round of the LPGA Tour's Women's Champions tournament in Singapore.

Park shot her second consecutive five-under 67 to lead by one shot from compatriot Mi Jung Hur, Thai star Ariya Jutanagarn and American Michelle Wie, who were all tied at nine-under.

With the greens soft after a morning rain shower, Park birdied five of her first nine holes to go out in 31 before an unlucky break at the 12th hole when she got mud on her ball.

As a result she made a double-bogey on the hole, her only blemish in two rounds at the Sentosa Golf Club, but regained her composure with birdies on the 14th and 18th holes.

World No.1 New Zealander Lydia Ko shot a four-under 68, and is three shots off the lead at seven-under.

Ko's putter was running hot at the end of her round as she knocked in three long birdie putts at the 16th, 17th and 18th.

The Olympic silver medallist has not won a title since July - a barren run by the 19-year-old Ko's standards - but she produced the shot of the day when she hit a fairway wood within inches of making a double-eagle at the fifth hole.

"I just kind of gripped my five-wood and ended up being like a foot by the hole," Ko said.

"Because the hole was kind of behind this little slope, I didn't know how long it was, because I thought it had kind of gone off the green. But it ended up being perfect."

The ever-consistent Minjee Lee is the only Australian in contention at the tournament after shooting a one-under 71 to be four-under for the tournament after an opening day three-under 69.

Lee's round was damaged by back-to-back bogeys at the par-four 10th and 11th holes.

Su Oh and Sarah Jane Smith are both at one-over the card after two rounds while tour veteran Karrie Webb is three-over after an even par round of 72 followed her opening day 75.

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