3-time defending champ Park likely to miss Women's PGA cut

ABS-CBN Sports on Jun 11, 2016 08:24 AM
3-time defending champ Park likely to miss Women's PGA cut
Inbee Park, of South Korea, watches her shot on the fourth hole fairway in the second round at the Women's PGA Championship golf tournament at Sahalee Country Club Friday, June 10, 2016, in Sammamish, Wash. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

TIM BOOTH, AP Sports Writer

SAMMAMISH, Wash. (AP) — Three-time defending champion Inbee Park was in position to miss the cut Friday in the KPMG Women's PGA Championship.

A day after wrapping up an LPGA Hall of Fame spot, the South Korean star shot an 8-over 79 on Friday to drop to 9 over and put the seven-time major champion on the verge of an early departure.

"Today's round was going all right on the front nine. I felt like I was holding on pretty good. On the back nine I just couldn't get a rhythm with the swing and I missed a lot of shots to the right, what I have been doing in the last month or so," Park said. "It was really frustrating and disanointing that I couldn't get the right swing to work. I really felt I could do it. I really thought I could play well this week and I thought I was really ready but I just wasn't."

The top 70 plus and ties will make the cut for the final two rounds, with the afternoon wave yet to tee off at difficult Sahalee Country Club. Brooke Henderson, the first-round leader after a 67, was in the afternoon group.

Park has been dealing with inflammation in the tendons and ligaments around her left thumb. She shot a 1-over 72 on Thursday, the round she needed to complete the 10-year requirement for the LPGA Hall of Fame. At 27, she became the youngest player to accomplish the feat.

But she made five bogeys and a double bogey on her final nine holes of the second round. Park lipped-out a par putt on the ninth hole, her last of the day, that could be the difference in whether she makes the cut.

It would be just her fifth missed cut since the start of the 2013 season, not including any tournaments Park withdrew from early. Park said she will reconsider taking an extended break to let the thumb heal, one that could bring the Olympics into question.

"I think now having tried three, four times with the injury, playing with the injury I kind of have to rethink and regroup," Park said. "I might need some time to really get better and be back with the confidence. I'm just going to have to sit down with my team and discuss it."

The real winner early in the second round was the towering trees of Sahalee. No playerr was able to make a charge in the morning, the lowest round coming from Catriona Matthew who shot 67 and stood at 1 over for the tournament. She was the only player in the morning session to post a round in the 60s.

Thailand's Ariya Jutanugarn, winner of her last three tournaments, was at 2 under for the tournament early in the second round before making three bogeys and a double bogey in a five-hole stretch. She shot 75 and was 4 over for the tournament.

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