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Del Rosario, Superal fumble with 73s in Singapore Open

Jan Veran - Philstar.com
Del Rosario, Superal fumble with 73s in Singapore Open
Princess Superal (left) and Pauline del Rosario

MANILA, Philippines – Pauline del Rosario blew a two-under card on a faltering frontside finish, ending up with a 73 — the same output put in by Princess Superal — as the Filipina aces struggled in the first 18 holes of the inaugural Singapore Women’s Open dominated by the Koreans at the Tanah Merah Country Club Friday.

Park Hyun Kyung came away with a solid seven-under 65 in the morning wave while compatriot Jeong Yun Ji matched it with her version of a 33-32 late in the day as they seized a one-stroke lead over Park Ji Young and Ahn Sun Ju, who carded identical 66s in near-ideal conditions in the $1.1 million, 54-hole championship also serving as the kickoff leg of the 2023 season of the Korea Women’s Golf Tour.

Del Rosario, an Epson Tour campaigner, actually recovered from a mishap on No. 11 with back-to-back birdies to close out her backside start at the well-kept layout. She knocked down another birdie on No. 2 to put herself in the mid-pack of the starting 102-player field headlined by world No. 3 Atthaya Thitikul of Thailand.

But she bogeyed the 387-yard No. 4 and yielded another stroke on the par-3 next before holing out with another miscue for a 38-35.

Her wobbly finish dropped her to joint 59th that includes ICTSI teammate Princess Superal, who groped for putting form coming off a long break and posted a one-birdie, two-bogey card.

“The putts just wouldn’t drop,” rued Superal, who came into a event as one of the top draws, having upstaged the likes of world No. 1 Lydia Ko in the inaugural Asia Pacific Cup in Jakarta last August.

Also teeing off on No. 10, Superal regained a stroke she dropped on her opening par-5 hole with a birdie on the par-3 16th but flubbed four birdie chances inside 6 feet while giving up another stroke on the tough par-4 second hole.

But with a slew of players posting low rounds, the Filipina duo will have a lot of catching to do to get into the conversation.

Meanwhile, drawing a late tee-time, Thitikul, who reached the world’s top ranking in late October and early November before dropping to No. 3, closed out her frontside with three straight birdies but settled for pars at the back and stood at tied 17th at 69, four strokes off the joint leaders.

World No. 14 Min Ji Park recovered big from a bogey on No. 4 with five birdies, including three-straight from No. 15, as she moved to joint ninth at 68 with Chan and seven others.

GOLF

PAULINE DEL ROSARIO

PRINCESS SUPERAL

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