Shibuno one clear ahead of Monday finish at US Women’s Open

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Shibuno one clear ahead of Monday finish at US Women’s Open

Hinako Shibuno (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)

Japan’s Hinako Shibuno will going into the final round of the US Women’s Open holding a one-shot lead after play was suspended on Sunday due to inclement weather in Houston.

The 22-year old had yet to begin her final round and led despite struggling to a moving day three-over par round of 74. No stranger to the top of a Major leaderboard, the Japanese star rose to sudden fame in the summer of 2019 when she won the Women’s British Open at Woburn, the first major for the 22-year-old on her first time playing outside Japan. However, that’s not to say she hasn’t been feeling the pinch as she looks to become Japan’s only multiple Major champion this week in Texas.

“I myself was very nervous,” she said after Saturday’s round. “Because I was on top of everybody, that’s why. I made mistake at the very beginning and because I’m not doing well today my premise wasn’t good today,” Shibuno added of how an opening hole bogey put her in a poor frame of mind for her moving day 74. “So all the holes seems to be very difficult for me.”

With the Champions Golf Club layout sodden after Sunday’s rain, the task will become no easier for Shibuno who has American Amy Olson breathing down her neck just a shot back at three-under. Olson is looking to make the US Women’s Open title her maiden one as a professional.

“I’m really pleased with how I played today,” she said after an even-par 71 on Saturday. “It was such a grind. Pars were a great score on every single hole today. It obviously would be a huge accomplishment [to win], something that you dream about as a kid. But obviously that’s a long way away and my whole goal is to really stay in the moment and not get ahead of myself.”

South Korea’s Ji Yeong2 Kim is alongside Thailand’s Moriya Jutanugarn in third spot at one-under par while Ariya Jutanugarn – Moriya’s sister – birdied her first hole of round four to move to even par, four back of Shibuno’s lead.

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