Fujitsu Ladies Saturday: Na-Ri Lee’s Closing 31 Leapfrogs Her to Lead

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With Fujitsu Ladies 1st-round co-leaders Yukari Baba (74) and Mihoko Iseri (76) plunging down the leaderboard, the door was open to many players, and the one who kicked it down the hardest was the same one who denied Ai Miyazato a JLPGA victory a few weeks ago.  Na-Ri Lee made 5 birdies in her 1st 6 holes on the back today to post a bogey-free 67 that lifted her to -6 through 36 holes and gave her a 1-shot lead on 20-year-old Ayaka Watanabe, who birdied 4 of her last 10 holes as part of her own 14-hole-and-counting bogey-free run.  Amateur Megumi Takahashi and 22-year-old Miki Sakai also made big moves on the back, as they posted bogey-free 32s to join Esther Lee and Teresa Lu 2 shots behind Lee.

With Sun-Ju Ahn (70) and Harukyo Nomura (69) only 3 back, this should be a close one tomorrow, particularly when you look at all the huge swings over the 1st 36 holes:

  • Asako Fujimoto (68-78)
  • Mihoko Iseri (67-76)
  • Yumiko Yoshida (68-77)
  • Phoebe Yao (78-69)
  • Mina Nakayama (69-78)
  • Yukari Baba (67-74)
  • Ritsuko Ryu (68-75)
  • Lala Anai (76-69)
  • Kaori Yamamoto (69-76)
  • Risa Ogasu (77-70)
  • Hyun-Ju Shin (78-71, MC)
Speaking of missed cuts, Yuri Fudoh, Sakura Yokomine, and Bo-Mee Lee just missed missing the cut today.  At +4 and T50, they’re playing for pride tomorrow.  But with Rikako Morita +2 and T32, a good final round can help Yokomine make up more ground on the money-list leader.
Whatever happens lower down the leaderboard, it’ll be interesting to see if the JLPGA’s Japanese young guns can start winning again or whether Na-Ri Lee can pick up her 2nd career victory on tour less than a month after her 1st.

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