Leona Maguire got her scoring boots on during the third round of the Honda LPGA Thailand but also threw in a couple of mistakes to slide down the leaderboard heading into the final round in Chonburi.
The Cavan ace carded six birdies in her third round, but also had a double-bogey and a late bogey in there as well on her way to a three-under 69 that dropped her outside the top-25 at Siam Country Club.
At 11-under for the week, Maguire is down in a share of 26th and won’t be in the running for the win, with Denmark’s Nanna Koerstz Madsen leading the way at 21-under, one shot ahead of Xiyu Lin and Celine Boutier at the $1.6million limited-field event.
Maguire’s scoring came down to a good day off the tee, hitting 13 fairways which led to 15 greens in regulation, but those two mistakes hit her as low scoring continued to be the order of the week in Thailand.
The Cavan woman birdied her opening hole, but her double came at the par-four third and she would add just one more birdie before the turn, at the par-four sixth, to close out her front nine in level-par.
Her back nine was better, birdies dropping at the 10th, 12th and 15th, and after her only bogey of the day came at the par-four 17th, she took advantage of the par-five 18th to close with a birdie.
But that is not the kind of scoring required to be in contention this week with big hitters rewarded at Siam Country Club and the soft conditions from frequent rain showers allowing players to be aggressive in attacking pins, and that allowed Madsen to pull ahead.
The Dane, a Solheim Cup team-mate of Maguire’s, was bogey-free in carding a six-under 66 to move one clear, however it was after a rain delay that she came to life, playing her first 14 holes in three-under before being brought off the course, then resuming with three birdies in her final four holes.
“I’m happy with the round. I didn’t make that many mistakes. Hit a lot of greens. Would have liked to make a couple more putts or at least get it to the hole, but I’m happy with the round overall,” said Madsen, who is still looking for her maiden LPGA Tour win.
“(I have to) stay patient. You’ve got to make a lot of birdies but you can’t force them. Then you won’t make any. You’ve just got to stay patient and see if the putts drop.”
She’s closely followed by Lin, who strung together four consecutive birdies on her inward nine to sign for a 66, and Maguire’s former Duke team-mate Boutier, who shot a 67, who both sit 20-under and just one shot back heading into the final day.
“It’s been pretty enjoyable. I feel like I’ve had a lot of birdies, so that’s always positive. The greens are very receptive so you can be pretty aggressive out there,” said Boutier.
“It’s kind of fun to see that there are a lot of birdie opportunities, and even when you miss a few you know you can still come back with a few birdies coming in. And especially finishing with a par-five is kind of an exciting finish.”
Japan’s Nasa Hataoka, who held a share of the second round lead, shot a two-under 70 to sit in a share of fourth at 18-under alongside Gaby Lopez and Brooke Henderson, while fellow overnight leader Su Oh struggled to a one-over 73 to drop out of the top-10 at 15-under.
- Full scores HERE