It looked to be a quiet day for Amy Yang as she made even-par on the front nine in round two of the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia. But a spectacular eagle on the 11th hole, followed by a bogey and birdie on holes 14 and 16 were enough to give the South Korean a three shot cushion at the half way stage of the tournament.
The 27-year-old is at 10-under par, three shots ahead of second placed Candie Kung of Taiwan, compatriot Mi Jung Hur, and Anna Nordqvist of Sweden, all tied at 7-under par.
Speaking on her eagle, she said, “It was about 125 yards and I was using my pitching wedge. It came off really solid off the face and it looked like it was going to go really close, but it actually went in. When the ball disappeared, I went, ‘Yay finally!’”
Yang also refused to let the late-round rain delay throw her off her game. She said, “I was actually getting a little frustrated about not making putts, and I was getting hungry. So I went and ate lunch during the break, and it actually gave me some time to think about what was going on and how to finish the next three holes, which helped me.”
Kung, who had a solid outing yesterday with a one-under par 70, attributed her 6-under par round today to a smarter and more focused approach towards her tournament preparation.
“I’m actually taking a different approach now. I’m focusing on the stuff I need to work on, like my short game and putting. I’ve been working on that the last couple of months and I think it’s been showing. Hopefully it will continue to go on for the next couple of rounds.”
The experienced 35-year-old LPGA veteran also spoke briefly about how she had considered retirement nearly a decade ago. She said, “Back in 2007, I just felt I had it. For some reason though, I felt like somebody up there was telling me that they gave me a talent to play golf, and here I am now. I’m happy to be here today, and I’m loving it.”
Sweden’s Nordqvist also put in another solid round as she notched a second round score of 68 to add to her four-under par score of 67 in the first round.
Giving some insight on her thoughts for the coming rounds, she said, “There are a lot of good scores out there. The course is in as good a shape as I’ve seen it. I can only do what I can do, but I feel like I’ve been playing solid and hopefully I can get a couple more putts to drop over the weekend. I’m really happy and am just taking it one day at a time.”
World no. 1 Lydia Ko had a much improved second round but three dropped shots on the final two holes leaves her at 2-under par with plenty to make up if she’s to challenge for the title come Sunday.
On the local front, Malaysia’s Nur Durriyah enjoyed a better outing to finish with an even-par 71, and is tied with Kelly Tan at 4-over par. It is a result that could have been better if not for the unforeseen weather and two dropped shots on 17 and 18.
She said, “I felt great and my game was good today. I trusted my irons more and I was reaching the greens more so I didn’t have to chip as much and could focus on my putting.
“I was on my second last hole when I heard that there was weather coming in, and I think that made me rush a bit and lose focus. I bogeyed the hole before the break, and after the break, I guess my rhythm was a bit off and I ended up bogeying that last one too. Overall though, I’m quite happy and I’m not too nervous or pressured.”