Nelly Korda leader, Céline Boutier in contact

© Getty Images Sport – Vaughn Ridley / Stringer

Nelly Korda had an exceptional day at Bradenton Country Club in Florida, recording six birdies and conceding two bogeys. Despite 32 putts, she posted a solid 67 (-4) to take the lead alone, taking advantage of Lydia Ko’s score of 70 (-1).

Nelly Korda, results

The American, ranked number 4 in the world, will start the moving day with a two-shot lead over So Mi Lee. The South Korean achieved a remarkable performance with a 65 (-6), marked by seven birdies and one bogey, which allowed her to move up to second place.

Lydia Ko, Xiyu Lin and Ayaka Furue are also well positioned, three shots behind the leader. Céline Boutier maintains her chances of defending her title at the LPGA Drive On Championship. Despite a double bogey at hole 3, the Frenchwoman recorded five birdies and finished with a score of 68 (-3).

His quality iron play, with 16 greens hit out of 18, allows him to position himself six shots from the lead. On the other hand, Perrine Delacour failed to make the cut after a difficult 73 (+2), marked by a complicated passage between holes 8 and 10 (bogey-bogey-double).

She ultimately ranked 81st, three shots away from qualifying for the weekend. For her part, Agathe Laisné recovered with a score of 70 (-1) on Friday, including two birdies and a bogey. However, his total score was not enough to hope to make the cut.

Nelly Korda embarked on her professional career in 2016 when she joined the Symetra Tour. Her breakthrough came when she secured her first victory at the Sioux Falls GreatLIFE Challenge, showcasing her golfing prowess with rounds of 68-67-69-66.

This triumph marked a significant milestone, as she triumphed over her Thai competitor Meechai. In 2021, she made a remarkable start to the year by claiming victory at the Gainbridge LPGA event held in Orlando, played on the challenging grounds of the Lake Nona Golf & Country Club (par 72).

She dominated the tournament with a total of 272 strokes, finishing at an impressive 16 under par. Her outstanding performance allowed her to outshine competitors like Thompson and Ko, who finished second with 275 strokes at 13 under par, and the South Korean and world number 1, Ko, who secured third place with 277 strokes at 11 under par.

In June of the same year, she achieved a significant milestone in her career by clinching her first major title at the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship. This victory catapulted her to the top of the world rankings, making her the first American to hold that position since Lewis in 2014.

Her triumph also marked the end of a long-standing dominance by South Korean female golfers. Her impressive performance earned her a spot in the individual golf tournament at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. She was one of the four representatives of the United States in Japan, alongside other prominent golfers like the various Thompsons, Kangs, and her older sister, Jessica.

On August 7, she made history by becoming the Olympic champion on the prestigious Kasumigaseki Country Club course in Kawagoe. She completed the event with a total of 267 strokes, finishing an impressive 17 under par. After initially securing second place in the first round with 67 strokes, she took the lead in the second round, where she completed it in 62 strokes.

In the final two rounds, she expertly managed her advantage, finishing both with 69 strokes. Her resilience paid off as she resisted the late surges from the local favorite Inami and the New Zealander Ko, ultimately securing the gold medal with 268 shots.

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