Thailand’s Moriya Jutanugarn holds a slender one-shot lead going in to tomorrow’s final round after a third round 67 (-4) saw her reach 16-under-par at the Aberdeen Standard Investments Ladies Scottish Open.
In perfect conditions for ‘moving day’, it was Moriya who took the early initiative in the final group with three birdies in an opening nine of 33, compared to overnight leader Mi Jung Hur from Korea, who opened with eight pars and a birdie.
Three further gains from the tenth saw Jutanugarn hit the front for the first time, a position she would not relinquish. The 25-year-old is once again paired with Hur tomorrow and joined by 2019 U.S Open winner Jeongeun Lee6 in the final group at 11.10am.
Looking to emulate the feats of her younger sister, Moriya said, “I had another pretty solid day, I made a couple of bogeys and I am just trying to play my game and have fun out there.”
2017 champion Mi Hyang Lee, posted a round of 68 (-3) to keep herself in the hunt.
“I think am still in the competition because when I won 2017, it wasn’t good weather and I was six strokes behind at that time so I really have confidence right now. I just have to play tomorrow.”
Scotland’s Carly Booth, who posted a flawless round of 66 (-5), has shown signs of being back to her best form this year and today’s impressive display will provide the local gallery with a welcome home-grown talent to support tomorrow.
“This is the only event where I have some family, so it’s always nice to come back and play in Scotland.
“You kind of get back into your old ways where you used to play in the rain, where some might not be so used to it. Not that I want it to rain; I like this weather, but if push comes to shove and that’s what it is, you deal with it.”
Defending champion Ariya Jutanugarn showed exactly why she is one of the best players in the world, surging through the field on the back nine with three birdies in a four-hole stretch, to give herself a chance of lifting the title once again.
“I saw my sister on the leaderboard and I tried to catch her, but I couldn’t. She beat me the last few weeks and this week she did a good job. I’ll keep rooting for her and cheering for her.
Low round of the day belonged to Australian 23-year-old Minjee Lee, who went bogey free in a round of 64 (-7). The highest ranked player in the Rolex Rankings (#4) endured the tough side of the draw over the first two days so relished the sunny calmer third round conditions.
“I played in the late/early wave, so these conditions were a treat for me after yesterday. I just tried to take advantage as much as I could. I’m probably going to be quite a few shots back, but obviously that means I can be pretty aggressive and I don’t have to leave anything out there.”