Sport : Golf

Shin in control of British Open

15th September 2012, 06:49pm

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Jiyai Shin: Leads the way

Jiyai Shin: Leads the way

The first Asian clean sweep of the women's golf majors in one season has been on the cards for some time and looks likely to be completed at Hoylake on Sunday.

South Korea's Jiyai Shin, winner at Sunningdale in 2008, took charge of the Ricoh British Open again in a second round which was restarted after Friday morning's 60mph gusts made the Royal Liverpool course unplayable.

The 24-year-old former world number one's brilliant eight-under-par 64, the best score of the week by four shots, swept her into a five-shot lead.

A 36-hole marathon is still to come on the final day, but even if she loses to her closest overnight challenger the 'Eastern Slam' will still go into the record books. Standing in second place is her compatriot Inbee Park.

Two more Koreans, Sun Young Yoo and Na Yeon Choi, captured the Kraft Nabisco and US Women's Open titles earlier in the year, while China's Shanshan Feng won the LPGA Championship.

Shin, who flew to Britain after winning a nine-hole play-off against American Paula Creamer in Virginia on Monday, said of her round: "I think it's the best round I've ever played.

"I had nine under there (in Virginia), but it was soft greens and fairways and easy to hit it aggressive. This is a totally different golf course.

"My goal was one under every single day, so eight under - wow. I can't believe it."

She has only recently returned from two months out following wrist surgery and Monday's victory was her first for almost two years.

Taiwanese world number one Yani Tseng will not consider herself out of it yet, but her hopes of an unprecedented third successive victory in the event nosedived when she double-bogeyed the 17th. After a second 72 in a row she has nine strokes to make up.

Japan's Mika Miyazato and Australian Karrie Webb share third place on three under, while the only European below par is 41-year-old Swede Carin Koch, two strokes further back after a 71.

England's Laura Davies, now 48 and playing in her 100th major, was already 10 over when she withdrew with an ankle injury 10 holes into her second round.

Karen Stupples, England's last winner of the title eight years ago, also headed home. Relieved to be handed another chance - she had two double bogeys in three holes yesterday before scores were declared null and void - the 39-year-old returned and slumped to an 81.

Playing partner Holly Clyburn reached halfway on a real high, however, by sinking an 18-foot eagle putt at the last.

The 21-year-old from Cleethorpes comfortably made the cut on one over and is involved in a tight battle to be leading amateur.

Fifteen-year-old New Zealand sensation Lydia Ko, already a winner on the LPGA Tour, is one under, while Clyburn's 17-year-old Curtis Cup team-mate Bronte Law is two over, but 16-year-old Charley Hull, joint third after her opening 71, crashed to an 80 and with two closing double bogeys did not even make the cut.

Not quite what she had in mind for a 'Best of British' day which saw a lookalike of The Queen roaming the course and Olympic medallist Beth Tweddle performing gymnastics with Scot Carly Booth - another to miss the cut.

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