Catriona Matthew Pulls Into 1st Place with an Eagle at the Manulife

Catriona Matthew (Scotland) carded -7 for the 2nd round at the Manulife Financial LPGA Classic and has pulled into the lead for the tournament at 15 strokes under par.   Matthew played a 2nd stunning round.  Her drive remained strong and accurate and her putter was steaming.  She was bogey-free and nailed an eagle on the par-5 fifth hole!

 Angela Stanford (USA), who shared the top of the board with Matthew at the end of the first round, couldn’t keep up.  Stanford carded -4 today and with -12 for the tournament, is holding 2nd place on the board.  Stanford’s game fell off a bit today.  Her drives were shorter and less accurate and she added 3 putts to her round.

Inbee Park (South Korea) plodded through most of her round today with shorter and less accurate drives.  Then, almost as though she finally got her rhythm, she knocked out the final 2 holes with birdies to card -4 for the round.  At -10 for the tournament, Park ends the 2nd round at the Manulife with a share of 8th place on the board.

If Thursday and Friday have provided an accurate preview, we can expect lots of birdies, a few eagles, and some breathtaking sub-par rounds over the weekend.  I’m predicting that tomorrow will bring a contest between the Sturdy Scot and the Serene Goddess for the top of the board.

Matthew came into the tournament hot and kept it that way through the 2nd round.  Can she do it again tomorrow?

Park, who struggled with her putter in the first round, slowed her game down today and may have recovered her rhythm.  Those final birdie holes signaled to me that after 16 holes Park finally dialed in on that game we’ve been watching as she marched toward her spot in golf history.  Park is keenly aware that a win at the Manulife would nail down one of those records that’s just waiting to be broken.

But to pass Matthew and get to the top of the board, Inbee Park needs to pass a mob that’s currently crowded into 3rd place, including Anna Nordqvist (Sweden), Chella Choi (South Korea), and 2 surprises, Ryann O’Toole (USA), and Belen Mozo (Spain).

The weather at the Grey Silo Golf Club in Waterloo, Canada is going to be golf-perfect all weekend.  The final rounds of the Manulife are going to be played under cloudless skies with light winds and temperatures in the mid-80s.  The Golf Channel will provide live coverage Saturday and Sunday, beginning at 2:30pm EST both days.  My bets are already in.



Tags: 2013 Manulife Financial LPGA Classic Catriona Matthew Golf Inbee Park LPGA

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