With her playing partners both in tight on No. 1, American Yealimi Noh had one thought in her head: “I hope I stick it, too, I don't want to be left out.”
She went one better, holing out from 126 yards for eagle, the first time she can remember opening a round with such a highlight. It also served as a great touchpoint anytime she felt a little pressure during her opening-round 65 at the Amundi Evian Championship.
“I wasn't making a few putts after the turn,” said Noh. “After pars, it was bogey, and I was like, oh, what the heck, you had an eagle.”
This marks Noh’s second appearance at Evian Resort Golf Club, finishing T44 here in her major debut in 2019. A player who is gracefully athletic by nature, she feels right at home at the picturesque venue, often finding herself staring at the scenic views of Lake Geneva and the Alps that sprawl around Evian-les-Bains, taking moments of calm in what can be a majorly chaotic week.
“I just forgot how amazing it was, and just being here,” said Noh, who will celebrate her 20th birthday on Monday. “When I'm frustrated during the round you look to the left or to the right and you see the lake and it just calms you down. So happy to be here. It's amazing.”
Her 65, the lowest round of her 2021 season, featured five birdies and one bogey to go with the opening eagle. It’s the first time in her career that she holds the lead after 18 holes.