Evian Championship: Nelly Korda and Charley Hull in contention as Ayaka Furue sets pace in France


Ayaka Furue carded an opening-round 63 to lie a shot clear of Nelly Korda and Brooke Henderson; Charley Hull three off the pace as she chases a maiden major title – watch the Amundi Evian Championship live on Friday from 10am on Sky Sports Golf and the Sky Sports Golf YouTube channel

Last Updated: 21/07/22 7:21pm

Ayaka Furue holds a one-shot lead after the opening day of the Amundi Evian Championship, with Nelly Korda and England’s Charley Hull part of the chasing pack.

Furue, a seven-time winner on the LPGA of Japan Tour, recovered from a slow start to post a eight-under 63 and set the pace on a low-scoring opening day at Evian Resort Golf Club.

The 22-year-old started on the back nine and responded to a bogey at the 13th by birdieing four of her next five holes to reach the turn in 33, with Furue then posting back-to-back gains from the second.

Ayaka Furue is chasing a maiden major title

Ayaka Furue is chasing a maiden major title

Furue then birdied three of her last four holes to set a clubhouse target that wasn’t matched, with Korda a shot off the pace after a bogey-free start and in tied-second with Canada’s Brooke Henderson.

Korda – playing just her fifth event since undergoing surgery for a blood clot in March – carded seven birdies to get within one of the lead, while Henderson made four consecutive birdies and produced a final-hole eagle to also move to seven under.

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“I had a lot of good numbers and I was hitting it close, and honestly what made the difference from today to the years past is I was just rolling them in,” Korda said.

Cheyenne Knight is two off the pace in fourth, while Hull is in the group three off the pace containing Lydia Ko and Jin Young Ko after four birdies in a five-hole stretch around the turn helped to a five-under 66.

“I was pretty much all around pretty solid, wasn’t I?” Hull said. “Pretty much hit some good putts, good iron shots. Yeah, just solid all round. Hopefully post three more of them scores. Just be patient. Obviously it’s a major so anything can happen.”

England’s Jodi Ewart Shadoff is on three under and Georgia Hall is a further shot back, while defending champion Minjee Lee joined Ireland’s Leona Maguire in starting the week with an opening-round 70.

Watch the Amundi Evian Championship throughout the week live on Sky Sports. Live coverage continues Friday from 10am on Sky Sports Golf and the Sky Sports Golf YouTube channel, with a second session live on Sky Sports Golf from 2.30pm.

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