Following the first round of the Taiwan Swinging Skirts LPGA presented by CTBC defending champion Nelly Korda is tied atop the leaderboard with two-time 2019 tournament winner Mi Jung Hur at 6-under par.
Hur managed to stay bogey-free on Thursday despite hitting only 6 of 14 fairways in tricky weather conditions that saw rain and swirling winds. Korda, who became a Rolex First-Time Winner at this event in 2018, had three bogeys coupled with seven birdies and an eagle to get off to a hot start. While there is pressure to defend her title, Korda said she was feeding off the support she got from the gallery in Chinese Taipei.
“It's definitely so special,” Korda said of being the defending champion. “I'm recognized by so many people now and everyone is really rooting for me. They are like, "Again! Again!" Hopefully I can get it done but there's still a lot of golf to be played.”
Australia’s Minjee Lee, who was runner-up to Korda at the event in 2018, sits in third at 5-under par following the first round. Lee was able to take advantage of the conditions on the back nine with four birdies and said that was key to her opening-round success.
“It was pretty windy out there, so I started with a birdie, which is nice, and then I think I took a little more advantage on the back nine where you could really -- some of the holes were downwind, so you would have a shorter shot in,” Lee said. “I holed a nice couple putts out of range [including a 30-footer on No. 5] so that was nice, too. I think overall, it was pretty solid.”
Four players are tied for fourth at 4-under par following the first round, Amy Olson, Caroline Masson, Angel Yin and Su Oh.