After much back and forth throughout the third round at the River Course at Kingsmill Resort with the leader changing frequently, two players finally tied for first ahead of Sunday with an overall 10-under par, including Thailand’s Moriya Jutanugarn who made a clutch putt on hole 17 to finish at 6-under par for the round along with Taiwan’s Wei-Ling Hsu who also shot 6-under par on Saturday.
Both players have reason to eye the trophy as Jutanugarn would win her second victory after winning the 2018 HUGEL-JTBC LA Open and Hsu would claim her first ever LPGA Tour victory since qualifying in 2015.
“Definitely a little nervous and a little exciting. But also the COVID pandemic in Taiwan--we got so many new case right now, so people are really nervous and the whole country almost shut down. So I’m very happy of my performance on the first round, that I can to show and share with all my friends and family the good news,” said Hsu who will be in the final round on Sunday for the first time. “I don't know what I going to end up today, but hopefully I going to have even better performance tomorrow and hopefully I can share this good news to my family and the people in Taiwan.”
“It’s great. It's always great to come back, of course,” said Jutanugarn. “Seeing the ball go into the hole and feeling good. Swing is good, but, I mean, tomorrow is going to be new day and you don't know what's going to happen. I'm just trying to keep working on what I'm doing and just go out and have fun.”
Following closely behind is American Jessica Korda who chipped it to within seven-feet of the hole on the final 18th to make one putt and claim solo third with an overall 9-under par for all three days. Korda nearly claimed her second victory of the 2021 season at the HUGEL AIR PREMIA LA Open when she went wire-to-wire the first three days.
“It was really slow today. It was tough. The greens are definitely a lot faster than they were the first couple days, so I think it was just hard for me to get really comfortable,” said Korda. “It was just nice to be able to put a couple birdies in.”
Fellow American Lizette Salas carded a day total of 7-under par 64 to tie for fourth with Australian Sarah Kemp who would have kept her lead from Saturday if not for one double-bogey on hole 11.