SH Park takes advantage of ultimate Evian mulligan

So Yeon Ryu of South Korea follows the flight of her ball after playing on the 10th hole during the first round of the Evian Championship women's golf tournament in Evian eastern France Thursday Sept. 14 2017

Sung Hyun Park was six-over par through five, when the Evian was reduced to a 54-hole tournament, she was back to zero.

The US Open champion acknowledged her good fortune. Thursday morning as Ai Miyazato waited on the green, she raised her putter and pointed it out towards the lake to show playing partner Yani Tseng what was rapidly approaching.

The Korean struck nine birdies on her way to an eight-under 63 and the early clubhouse target, with Moriya Jutanugarn birdieing her final hole to grab second spot ahead of Nordqvist and Katherine Kirk. When she moved to 7 under for the day with yet another birdie at her 11th hole all sorts of possibilities began to open up but a bogey at the 13th slowed the momentum.

"The distance was 25 meters, so I was deciding whether I'm going to do chipping or putting, and I think after I made the shot, I was surprised, as well", Park said about her eagle. "It looks like it's plenty of good chances out there today", Jutanugarn said.

Defending champion In Gee Chun of South Korea was seven shots back after mixing four birdies with three bogeys for a 70. "I rolled the ball very good, and just trying to keep going and like see a good shot and just relax on the golf course".


Park had been six over through as many holes when wild weather at Evians Les Bains, France, forced players from the course a day earlier. "Yesterday the last couple holes we felt like we were playing in a hurricane", said Korda. "I just need to concentrate on myself". "Putted well and I am delighted with the score".

The decision to re-boot the fifth and final major of this year's Ladies Professional Golf Association European Tour - which carries total prize money of $3.65 million (£2.76 million/€3.07 million) - received criticism from some players and observers, with the United States Jessica Korda, who was leading at two-under when play was scrapped, saying it "sucked".

"Right now, nothing to lose and no fear, and just feel joy of my game, and that's definitely helping", said the 32-year-old Miyazato, who had made a 3 over start to Thursday.

Miyazato, the 2009 and 2011 Evian victor before it had major status, was in a cluster of players at three-under, trailing Park by five, including Sophia Schubert, the US Women's Amateur champion.

Paula Creamer withdrew from the tournament midway through the round, citing a sprained tendon in her left wrist and calling the pain "excruciating".

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