Hot putter keeps Lee in front by one at Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia

Kuala Lumpur, October 11: Korean Ilhee Lee relied on some superb putting to maintain a one-shot lead at the halfway stage of the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia, carding a second round six-under-par 65 to take her total to 13-under-par at Kuala Lumpur Golf & Country Club (KLGCC).

Ilhee Lee

Ilhee Lee

Trailing Lee by one on 12-under-par is American teenager Lexi Thompson, who carded a spectacular eight-under 63 at KLGCC’s East Course with seven birdies and an eagle against one bogey. China’s Shanshan Feng shot 65 to lie in third place at 10-under par, one shot clear of American Paula Creamer and South Korea’s IK Kim.

“I tried to do exactly the same thing as yesterday,” said Lee, who had 27 putts today and 26 in the first round. “I did mistakes a lot, actually, but my putting was good so I saved a lot.”

Thompson made the turn five shots off the lead but amped it up on the back nine with four birdies and an eagle.

“It was all about momentum,” said the big-hitting American. “On the back nine I made a few birdies and then I had that eagle so I pretty much just had it going my way. I just tried to keep confident out there and focused on one shot at a time.”

The round of the day, however, cane from South Korea’s Amy Yang who set a new tournament record with a stunning nine-under 62. She nailed 10 birdies against one bogey to vault up the leaderboard from 48th place at the start of the day into joint sixth position.

Lexi Thompson

Lexi Thompson

Defending champion and World No. 1 Inbee Park left herself a mountain to climb after an even-par 71, placing her joint 39th on one-under-par. Amateur Michelle Koh maintained her position as the best-placed Malaysian despite a second round 76, in 61st place on four-over-par.

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