South Korea’s An and Choi tie CP Women’s Open lead as Canada’s Henderson fades

OTTAWA — Two former teammates are tied atop the CP Women’s Open standings, vying for their first wins on the LPGA Tour.

South Koreans Hye-Jin Choi and Narin An are tied at 16 under after three rounds at the Canadian Women’s Golf Championship. They played together last month at the Dow Great Lakes Invitational and have known each other for more than five years after facing each other in Asia.

« Only about a month ago we played on the same team and we played well, » said Choi, who was paired with An and American Lindy Duncan on Saturday. « Obviously we both focus on our individual game when we played together today, but hopefully we both play well tomorrow and score well. »

An, the tournament’s second-round leader, shot a 3-under 68 to stay atop the standings. Choi shot a 5-under 66 to tie with An.

« I didn’t like my game as much today as I did yesterday and two days ago, » An said. « But I think not making big mistakes is a positive thing to take away. »

South Africa’s Paula Reto (67), the first-round leader after setting a course record at the Ottawa Hunt and Golf Club on Thursday, was third. USA’s Sarah Schmelzel (66) and Nelly Korda (68) tied for fourth at 14 under.

If Korda wins the tournament, she will reclaim the No. 1 spot in the Women’s World Golf Rankings.

« At the end of the day, you’re not going to move up the leaderboard unless you hit the putts, » Korda said. « I’m going to go to the range, try to get my swing in order, because I was hitting it all over the front nine.

« Hopefully I can get a good one tomorrow. »

World No. 5 Brooke Henderson of Smiths Falls, Ont., shot a 2 of 73 to tumble the leaderboard. She started the day tied for 32nd but finished the third round 3 under, tied for 60th.

Henderson birdied twice on his first nine but then missed birdies on numbers 10 and 11, with a bogey and a double bogey on 12 and 13 respectively.

« Golf is so much fun. I could have been minus-9 on 11 holes today, like minus-9 overall, so easily, if I made that putt on 10 and 11, » Henderson said. « Instead, it shakes me up a bit, then I go to a not-so-memorable back nine. »

Henderson has the most wins of any Canadian professional golfer, regardless of gender, and is the face of the CP Women’s Open. Hundreds of fans followed her around the Ottawa Hunt and Golf Club, where she is an honorary member and featured in most of the event’s promotional materials.

« I feel like it’s an honor to be able to play in front of so many people, so I’m just trying to make the most of it, » Henderson said. « I won’t blame them if they don’t follow me tomorrow and don’t follow the leaders, but so far it’s been an amazing week. »

After Henderson finished touring, most of his gallery migrated to Maddie Szeryk’s band. Szeryk (69), of London, Ont., was the bottom Canadian, tied for 11th at 9 under.

« It’s the Canadian Open, it’s a major event for us, » said Szeryk, who noticed his crowd growing after Henderson finished his round. « All the friends and family are here, and just playing well in front of the Canadian crowd is really special. »

This report from The Canadian Press was first published on August 27, 2022.

John Chidley-Hill, The Canadian Press


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