Jiyai Shin's 62 paces field at soggy Kingsmill
WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (AP) — Jiyai Shin was in the middle of a solid round when a rain delay halted play at the LPGA Tour's Kingsmill Championship for 2 hours.
Facing a tough chip shot when she returned to the course, Shin spent the break worrying about how to handle it.
When she got the chance, she showed that she shouldn't have worried at all.
"I left with a tough chip shot, like 20 yards to the hole," Shin said after shooting a tournament-record 9-under 62 in Thursday's first round. "I'm really worried. ... How can I practice? In my mind, it was really hard. When I went back to there, I chipped it in."
The LPGA Tour initially said it would not count the round as a tournament record because the players were allowed to lift, clean and place their ball because of already soggy conditions. But when tournament director Wayne Nooe said he would count it, the LPGA agreed.
With 33 players still on the course when play was halted by darkness, the 24-year-old Shin, from South Korea, was two shots ahead of the field. Her round matched the lowest on tour this season, and eclipsed the previous mark of 63, shared by seven players.
Shin had nine birdies in her bogey-free, career-best round.
Ranked as the No. 1 player in the world for 16 weeks in 2010, Shin is chasing her first LPGA Tour victory in more than two years. She won the Women's British Open in 2008 before it was a major, and is 13th on the money list with a third and two ties for third her best finishes. She missed two months for wrist surgery and recuperation.
"Finally I can say golf course is not too hard," said Shin, who is breaking in a new caddie this week. "My plan was no bogey. The rain helped make the greens softer, so I hit more aggressive on the back nine, too."
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