The leader at this stage is Japan’s Mamiko Higa, who had also led after round one, but the Vic Open champion from February, Celine Boutier, might yet have a say in the outcome of the opening 36 holes, the Frenchwoman two shots from Higa’s lead with still four holes to play.
Higa leads by one over Jessica Korda and by two over the impressive amateur Gina Kim and the afore-mentioned Boutier who still has work to do.
Minjee Lee heads the Australians after a round which included seven birdies, two bogeys and a triple bogey, the triple bogey coming at the demanding par 3 11th at which her tee shot rolled back off the green and like so many others in the field she struggled to minimise the damage.
To Lee’s credit, however, she bounced back immediately with two consecutive birdies on her return to the golf course after the weather break and she would finish with 69. At 2 under she is just four from the lead and well enough placed on a golf course which should eventually see the game’s better players to the fore.
Lee finished as darkness fell, in fact she was forced to play her final hole after the siren had sounded soon after she hit her final tee shot. By the time she reached her ball in the fairway she was struggling to see the target with her approach and she relied on feel to reach the green and then two-putted for a par and her 2 under round.
Hannah Green did well to make the cut on her US Women’s Open debut, the West Australian finding herself in 41st place at 2 over and eight shots from Higa’s lead while Katherine Kirk was the only other Australian to make the weekend when she added a second round of 72 to be at 3 over and tied for 53rd place.
Other Australians Sarah Kemp, Su Oh, Karrie Webb and Gabriela Ruffels will not play the final 36 holes.
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