Hyo-Joo Kim (28, South Korea), who is chasing the Bear Trophy for the best scoring average of the season, fell behind rival Ataya Thittitjer (Thailand) on the first day of the final event of the 2023 season on the Women’s Professional Golf (LPGA) Tour.
Kim carded six birdies and three bogeys for a 3-under 69 in the first round of the CME Group Tour Championship at the par-72 Tiburon Golf Club Gold Course in Naples, Florida (USA) on Sunday. 캡틴토토 도메인
Kim finished the first day of play in a tie for 22nd place, alongside defending LPGA Rookie of the Year Hae Ran Hae (22-DAOL Financial Group).
After a slow start with two bogeys through five holes, Kim made her first birdie on the seventh (par-4) and followed it up with back-to-back birdies on Nos. 13-15. After a bogey on the 16th (par-3), she closed out the day with back-to-back birdies on the 17th and 18th holes.
Tee, who is competing for the Bear Trophy, which is awarded to the player with the best scoring average, shot a 5-under 67 in the first round and is tied for 10th place. She is two strokes behind Hyo Joo Kim.
Kim is just 0.013 strokes behind the top-ranked Tee Tzu (69.689) in scoring average before this tournament. The gap widened slightly after the first round.
Among the South Koreans, Choi Hye-jin (24-LOTTE) is tied for fifth place with a 6-under-par 66. She is three strokes behind co-leaders Yin Luning (China) and Nasa Hataoka (Japan-over 9-under 63).
Choi made six birdies on the day, including three in a row on Nos. 13-15.
Playing with a sore knee, Jin Young Ko (28-Solare) was one stroke back and tied for 41st.
Lilia Boo (USA), who leads the world ranking, money list and Player of the Year points, finished tied for 32nd with a 2-under 70.