Three-way tie atop leaderboard at Evian Championship

Patty Tavatanakit, Gemma Dryburgh and Ingrid Lindblad each carded a 7-under-par 64 on Thursday to reside in a three-way tie for first place at the Evian Championship in Evians-les-Bains, France.

Each member of that trio recorded a bogey-free round at Evian Resort Golf Club. Tavatanakit, of Thailand, and Dryburgh of Scotland each had five birdies on the back nine, while Lindblad of Sweden started on No. 10 and had five on the front nine.

“Yeah, I would say it’s a pretty simple round of golf,” said Lindblad, 24, a former World Amateur No. 1 and LSU golfer who turned professional in June. “I think missed two fairways, missed two greens, so was just in it the whole round. Was just trying to hit the targets that we been talking about.”

Dryburgh also was proud of her putting game after matching her career low for 18 holes.

“Yeah, putting well, kind of just seeing the lines really well,” she said. “My putting coach, Nick Soto, has been with me this week, so I think the work has kind of paid off.

“Also struck the ball well. Yeah, obviously no dropped shots, so that was nice to do around here. It’s not an easy course. Just have some really good memories here last year obviously finishing top 10.

“Yeah, just hoping to keep it going.”

Tavatanakit has notched three top-10 finishes this season, including a victory in her home country at the Honda LPGA Thailand a few years after her maiden title at the 2021 Chevron Championship.

“… if anything, I feel like I’m more comfortable with my game compared to last year,” Tavatanakit said.

Six others reside one stroke back of the leaders, including 2014 tournament champion Hyo Joo Kim of South Korea and 2015 champion Lydia Ko of Australia. Kim recorded a bogey-free round, while Ko offset a bogey on No. 2 with seven birdies. Ko has 26 LPGA Hall of Fame points, and a win would get her past the minimum 27 needed for induction.

World No. 1 Nelly Korda shot a 2-under is tied for 21st place with 16 others, including defending champion Celine Boutier of France and 2022 winner Brooke Henderson of Canada.

Korda totaled six birdies, two bogeys and a double bogey on the 16th hole in her return after missing her title defense at last week’s Ladies European Tour at Centurion Club due to a dog bite.

Amateur Chun-Wei Wu, who received a sponsor exemption to gain entry into the event, recorded an ace with a 5-iron on the par-3, 177-yard fifth hole.

“I didn’t see the ball go in,” said Wu, who finished with a even-par 71. “I asked my friend, and they say, you go in. I said whoo-hoo. Really? First hole-in-one in a major. I’m so excited.”

Jodi Ewart Shadoff of England also registered a hole-in-one after she holed out from 155 yards with a 9-iron on the par-13 16th.

“I struck it really nicely,” Ewart Shadoff said. “It was a little right of the pin, so I knew it needed the left bounce off that slope. It was going straight at the hole, and I was like, ‘oh, man, this has a chance.’ My caddie was like, ‘get the putt.’ It’s funny.”

–Field Level Media