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2022 Japan Taiwan Friendship Udon-Ken Ladies Golf Tournament
October 14 - 16 (Fri. - Sun.)
2022 Kenda Tire TLPGA Open
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2022 Taiwan LPGA Tour | KENDA Tire TLPGA Open 21– 23 Sep First-Round Recap

A four-way tie was formed after the first-round of the 2022 KENDA Tire TLPGA Open. Chen Yu-Ju (陳宇茹), Ling Shan-Wei (林善葳), Wang Li-Ning (王莉甯), and Chang Hsun-Ping (張瑄屏) carded matching 3-under 69 to share the lead in the NT$3-million, 54-hole TLPGA Tour event.

Lee Chia-Pei (李佳霈), Shih Cheng-Hsuan (石澄璇) and Chang Ya-Chi (張亞琦) sit two shots back in equal fifth at 1-under-par 71.

Chang Hsuan-Ping, who created a course-record 62 in the second-round last year, registered three birdies, zero bogey. “The greens felt faster than last year when you’re in a downhill position, which makes it very important that you get yourself into a good spot on the greens, not to make yourself too uncomfortable with the putter,” said Chang.

On the 16th, with a big tree planting right down the middle of the fairway, Chang creatively aimed towards the right and perfectly cut into just 110-yard away from the flag, before she executed her lofty approach into just 4 feet and nailed the birdie putt, which she deemed one of her best plays today. “I would have gone to the left of the tree in most situations but that last-minute inspiration told me to cut through the right path, which should give me a better look to the target. And yeah, it was great execution,” Chang said about the birdie from the 26th, her third during the round.

“I had an okay first-round, not too many mistakes, but I didn’t give myself too many chances, either.” Chang made pars on all par-5s, which she thought has major room for improvements.

Lin Shan-Wei, who won the KENDA Tire TLPGA Open in 2019, scored six birdies in the first-round while making three bogeys along the way. “I’m excited to be back here at Taifong, where I always did pretty well. But it also came with different expectation and pressure to myself,” said Lin, who shrugged off a slow start on Thursday to make a trio of birdies from the 5th hole, turning her score to red.

In the closing stretch, Lin mounted a second surge with a tap-in 1-footer on the 16th and another eagle attempt from 12 feet on the 17th, which ultimately gave her a two-shot boost for a share of lead.

Wang, who, unluckily, was stung by a bee on the 15th tee, made six birdies and three bogeys to sit in the four-way lead as well. In fact, she was on a hot streak from the 5th hole, picking up five birdies in the six-hole span, but didn’t quite carry that form into the back nine, with the only highlight being a perfect 33-foot putt on the 14th green which drew a surprised look from playing partner Lin. Wang has already one victory under her belt this TLPGA Tour season at the YTS & SUNCITY Heritage Tour.

Defending champion Juliana Hung (洪玉霖) opened her birdie count as late as the 12th hole today and settled for a first-round 74 in the end. She is currently in a tie for nineteenth.

The Kiwi-Taiwanese is one of the three international players competing this week, which include Chonlada Chayanun of Thailand and Japan’s Sasaki Kuno—a rare scene on the TLPGA Tour for these past two seasons under Covid-related restrictions.

Chayanun finished as the runner-up earlier this month at the Thai LPGA and Taiwan LPGA Tour co-sanctioned BGC Thailand Ladies Masters. And she decided to travel to Taiwan to play in another two TLPGA Tour events. “I missed the food here, and the bigger prize,” she said with a smile. “But yeah, it’s not been easy this past week with the quarantine and little practice time. I played on this Taifong course three years ago, but I don’t really have much memory of how it was like, so today, I almost went out there with zero knowledge and pure instinct. I believe I’m only going to play better in the next two rounds.” She’s now at 1-over in equal sixteenth.

Lee Hsin (李欣), this year’s WPG Ladies Open and Jing-Mao Ladies Open winner, carded 72 and sit in a tie for eighth. She almost aced no.8, leaving a 2-foot birdie putt, but overall, she wasn’t steady enough from the tees, hitting just eight fairways.

Last week’s BNP PARIBAS & TLPGA Heritage Tour winner Lin Yi-Hui (林怡潓) also sit in a tie for eighth, carding five birdies and five bogeys. The rookie pro started from the back nine and birdied the 10th and 12th right away, both with splendid chip-ins off of the greens.

The KENDA Tire TLPGA Open, in its ninth year, celebrates KENDA’s 60th anniversary, whose iconic models Hole-N-1 and Pro Tour are used in the manufacturing of 80% of the world’s golf cart wheels. The Taifong Golf Club plays host to 60 professionals and 18 amateurs from Wednesday to Friday in the NT$3-million event. The winner will take away a NT$540,000 cash prize.

Second-round action begin on Thursday at 8:00 in the morning from both first and tenth tees. Hole-in-one prizes from Departure, SAMPO, EAGLE Golf, and BESV E-Bike will be up for grabs on Hole 2, 8, 12, 15.


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