HSBC LPGA Brasil Cup 2009
Itanhanga Golf Club
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
January 24, 2009
Matthew takes lead at HSBC LPGA Brasil Cup 2009. The inaugural HSBC LPGA Brasil Cup 2009 is underway with Scotland’s Catriona Matthew taking the first-round lead at 3-under-par 69. The 6,393-yard, par-72 Itanhanga Golf Club in Rio de Janeiro is playing host to this two-day, 36-hole golf exhibition to kick off the 2009 LPGA Tour season. The unofficial money event features a 15-player field and a $500,000 purse.
First-round conditions improved steadily throughout the day, starting off with rain, then turning to mist and finally sunny skies. Matthew started hot on Saturday with birdies on four of her first six holes – including tap-ins at holes three and five – before back-to-back bogies at seven and eight dropped her to 2-under-par through nine holes. The Scot birdied the 10th hole with a four-foot putt to end the day at 3-under-par. The 39-year-old has two official LPGA Tour victories in her career, the last coming at the 2004 Wendy’s Championship for Children.
South Carolina native Kristy McPherson recorded back-to-back birdies on 17 and 18 to finish at 1-under-par 71 entering tomorrow’s final round. The 27-year-old McPherson is two strokes behind leader Matthew with 18 holes remaining. She recorded six top-10 finishes in 2008 including a career-best tie for fourth at the P&G Beauty NW Arkansas Championship Presented by John Q. Hammons. Matthew, McPherson and Brazil’s Angela Park will be paired together in Sunday’s final round.
Brazilians in mix. Native Brazilians Angela Park and Candy Hannemann are in the hunt following the first round at the inaugural HSBC LPGA Brasil Cup 2009. Park, the 2007 Louise Suggs Rolex Rookie of the Year, carded an even-par 72 on Saturday to move into third place, three shots behind leader Catriona Matthew. She rolled in birdies putts of 12 feet on holes six and 13, along with bogies on holes seven and nine to finish even-par for the day. Hannemann is tied for fourth with American Allison Fouch at 2-over-par 74 on the day.
Five players, including two-time LPGA Tour winners Carin Koch, Christina Kim and Laura Diaz, are tied for sixth at 3-over-par, six strokes behind Matthew.
Catriona Matthew, 34-35=69 (-3)
Hole 1, 279-yard, par-4: birdie – sand wedge to 10 feet
Hole 3, 475-yard, par-5: birdie – sand wedge to 1 foot
Hole 5, 461-yard, par-5: birdie – sand wedge to 1 foot
Hole 6, 168-yard, par-3: birdie – 5-iron to 10 feet
Hole 7, 411-yard, par-4: bogey – bad drive, punch out
Hole 8, 402-yard, par-4: bogey – bad drive
Hole 10, 168-yard, par-3: birdie – 5-rescue to 4 feet
Q. Catriona, talk about your day. You have the lead at 3-under-par after one round.
CATRIONA MATTHEW: I birdied four of the first six holes and that got my round going. Had a couple of bogies on seven and eight, but came back with the birdie on 10. Had a few chances coming in, but didn’t hole the putts.
Q. Catriona, you are five months pregnant. How are you feeling?
CATRIONA MATTHEW: I’m feeling fine actually. I get a little tired towards the end, but it’s not really affecting me just yet.
Q. You might not play too many tournaments this year. Do you feel like you would like to win here before you take a break?
CATRIONA MATTHEW: Yeah, that would be great. I think I’m only going to play one more maybe. To have a win would be fantastic. I’ll play maybe just a few tournaments, maybe Singapore if I’m feeling good.
Q. Can you talk about using a local caddie and how he has been?
CATRIONA MATTHEW: He’s been really good. He did a great job keeping my clubs dry. A good player himself, he plays to scratch. He’s doing good.
Q. Tell us about tomorrow. What is your plan?
CATRIONA MATTHEW: Go out and play just as well as I did today. I’m in a good position with this being 36 holes, so just go make a few birdies. If it’s another day like this, just try to shoot under par.
Q. Angela, talk about how you played today. Are you happy with even-par?
ANGELA PARK: I would have liked to play better. I was hoping for something under-par to put myself in better position, but I didn’t really play bad at all. Tomorrow is going to be a great, fun day.
Q. Talk about the crowd today. A good number of people came out despite the rain and most were watching you.
ANGELA PARK: Maybe half were following me. It was good. It was a little stressful out there. I felt kind of comfortable a little bit, but it was a good experience. It’s been two years since I’ve been on the LPGA and it’s time for me to step it up.
Q. What would it mean for you to get a win, although it will be an unofficial win, here in Brazil?
ANGELA PARK: Unofficial, official, a win is a win to me. I really thought about it before I came here, but then I thought I better not think of that and get ahead of myself. So I really don’t want to think about it. It would be really special.