Of course, there is no evidence that Ha Neul Kim is contemplating returning to Korea full time, that is total speculation on your parts. Ha Neul has had stretches of bad play before in her career, so let's give her a chance to iron out the kinks before we decide her latest experiment is a failure!
Hmmmm...so Sky returns to the KLPGA and is playing pretty well vs. the often scare of trunk slamming on the JLPGA. Hopefully Sky plays well and I can stay awake tonight....I'd also like to watch the JLPGA event afterwards but that's pushing it for this old fart....1am PST start time.
Round 3: Jung Min Lee Goes Low to Claim Second win of 2015
Round 3 started out with an almost unimaginable run by Yoon Ji Cho, who made eight consecutive birdies to start her day, an all time KLPGA record. She moved into a tie for the lead.
After that, she cooled off, and the tournament tightened into an amazing battle between a number of great players and a few journeymen. At one point on the back nine, there were around ten players within two shots of the lead, including Jung Min Lee, Min Sun Kim, Rookie star Gyeol Park, Ha Neul Kim, Seon Woo Bae, and Shi Hyun Ahn.
In Gee Chun, playing with Cho, heated up after Cho cooled down, but couldn't catch the leaders despite a 68. She finished 12th.
For a long time, 10 under seemed to be the score to beat. Up to five players would be tied at times at that score. Occasionally one would move to 11 under, but soon fall back down again. Yoon Ji Cho was the first to get into the clubhouse at that score after finishing her amazing round with a par for a 64.
Gyeol Park fell out of it with a double on 16, and Shi Hyun Ahn made bogey on 12 and 14 and could not recover.
Jung Min Lee finally broke the jogjam with birdies on 15 + 16 to move to 11 under. By that point she was 6 under for the day. Moments later, Ji Hyun Kim 2 missed a five footer for birdie on 15 to catch her.
Ha Neul Kim made a valiant effort to catch Lee. She made birdies on 15 and 16 to move to 10 under, one behind her. But Lee then made birdie on 18 to move to 12 under, shooting a 65 in the process.
It was too much for Ha Neul, who bogied the final hole. And none of the other players who were close could close the gap, either. So Jung Min captured her second win of the season, becoming the third player, after In Gee Chun and Jin Young Ko, to become a multiple winner in 2015.
Congrats to Jung Min Lee on a great come from behind win!
Scores: 1. Jung Min Lee 65 -12 2. Ji Hyun Kim 2 68 -11 3. Seon Woo Bae 70, Yoon Ji Cho 64, Hee Won Jung 71 -10
Notables: 6. Min Sun Kim 5 67, Ha Neul Kim 69 -9 8. Shi Hyun Ahn 70, Min Young Lee 2 67 -8 11. Gyeol Park (R) 69 -7 12. In Gee Chun 68 -6 14. Bo Kyung Kim 68 -5 20. Chae Young Yoon 72 -3 25. Yoon Kyung Heo 71, Soo Jin Yang 70 -2 33. Ji Hyun Oh 72 -1 41. Sung Woon Lee 73 Even 55. Hee Kyung Bae 73 +4
What a competitive final round. Great finish for the win by Jung Min Lee
After Yoon Ji Cho started with eight birdies in a row. I thought that she would be the one to beat. Had a short birdie putt on nine, but lipped out. She also failed to get up and down, from just in front of par five number ten. Managed only one birdie and one bogey the rest of the way.
Good final round by Ha Neul and In Gee. Too bad they both made bogey on eighteen.
Yeah, this was one of the more exciting final rounds of the year. So many name players in contention, Cho's amazing 8 birdies, Ha Neul trying to make a comeback win... And Jung Min Lee establishing herself as a top contender for Player of the Year. Great stuff!
Some more pix
Jung Min Lee
Yoon Ji Cho
Ji Hyun Oh
Come back soon, Ha Neul!
Shi Hyun Ahn and Daughter w/ Ha Neul as babysitter