25 players within three shots of lead as Round 2 of KPMG Women's PGA Championship begins
So you’re saying there’s a chance?
With 25 golfers within three shots of the overnight lead after round one of the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship, the rest of the week is set to be high on drama with a tight leaderboard at Aronimink Golf Club.
And you only need to look at the LPGA Tour’s previous major to see that as long as you’re in the mix after Thursday, you’ve got a good chance to make a move for the balance of the tournament.
Mirim Lee, who went on to win the ANA Inspiration, was four shots back after the opening round in California.
While its unlikely the record for highest 36-hole lead score (147 – Sandra Post) in KPMG Women's PGA Championship history will be broken this week, Aronimink Golf Club bared its teeth Thursday.
Golfers spoke about the brisk breeze and slopey, difficult greens.
“It is definitely a beast of a golf course,” said Lexi Thompson.
“When you had 9-wood into that par-3, 8, you’re praying to God to just get it on the green and two-putt and get out of there,” added first-round co-leader Brittany Lincicome.
The co-lead of 3-under 67 from Kelly Tan and Lincicome was just two shots lower than the all-time highest score from an 18-hole leader in KPMG Women’s PGA Championship history (69, held by six golfers since 1982).
With the whole of the morning wave on the course Friday, there were less than 10 rounds under par, with no golfer better than 2-under. The course is playing about 100 yards shorter on Friday (6,437 yards versus 6,539 yards on Thursday) but with some tighter pins.
But even if the wind picks up and the Donald Ross-designed greens get the best of the players in contention on Friday, history is on their side.
Two of the last eight KPMG Women’s PGA Championship winners (Brooke Henderson, 2016 and Shanshan Feng, 2012) shot over-par in their second rounds and still went on to win the championship.
The key will be to stay steady. There is still much golf left to be played this week and the drama is already getting turned up high – with plenty of golfers with a chance to win.
“It's a major championship. You're going to make bogeys," said first round co-leader Tan. "I just look at it as those things are going to happen. I'm not a robot. I'm not going to hit it to a perfect spot every time.
"Just keep telling myself to keep giving myself chances.”