LPGA Tour's HSBC World Match Play Championship: Round One Close-Up
20 to 12. That was the score during the first round of the HSBC WWMPC in New Rochelle, New York. That was the score, with the margin of victory favoring … the favorites. Twelve upsets took place, where lower seeds found a way to win (or higher seeds found the guts to lose.) Sounds similar to USGA championships, the men’s World Golf Championship, and every other event that is contested at match play. Heck, even the NCAA hoops tourneys turn out that way.
Five matches made their way to extra time, with three going 19, one 20, and the grandmomma, 23 holes. In that one, Maria Hjorth wore down Catriona Matthew with a relentless onslaught of pars, dispatching the 25th seed to the wall of shame.
Numbers one and three (Ochoa and Sorenstam) advance, but two and four (Webb and Kerr) were sent to the nearest bus station by Charlotte Mayorkas and Amy Hung, two less-than-reputable competitors. Ai Miyazato was six-under even fours on her way to a 5 & 4 scalding of Becky Morgan. Reilley Rankin was five-under even fours in her upset win over Paraguay’s Julieta Granada, while Stacey Prammanasudh reached the same number in her triumphal march past Trish Johnson.
Looking ahead to round two, the three closest matches total 33 (the sum of the seedings) with 16 v. 17 (Prammanasudh/Pat Hurst), 15 v. 18 (Jee Young Lee/Nicole Castrale), and 19 v. 14 (Angela Park/Jeong Jang). No high-profile matches exist, so the threat of more upsets continues into today.
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