Annie Park leads CP Women’s Open, Aditi Ashok in T30

A purposeful 65 helped Annie Park gain a one-stroke advantage on a packed leaderboard. Aditi Ashok made three birdies in her 70

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Annie Park - LPGA Images

LPGA Report, 23 August 2019: If Annie Park said she wasn’t thinking about Solheim Cup, that would be a lie. It was, after all, the motivator behind the 7-under par, 65 she fired on Thursday to climb to the top of the leaderboard at the CP Women’s Open.

Aditi Ashok golf player played a solid back nine containing three birdies for an opening-round 70. The Indian is lying T30 as she looks for a good note to finish a difficult season on the LPGA.

Thursday, Park took a rollercoaster ride around Magna Golf Club. She recorded seven birdies and an eagle, offset by two bogeys. She was hopeful she’d better her previous low round of 63, which she fired in the final round of the 2018 ShopRite LPGA Classic for her first win on Tour, but settled for 65 after making a bogey at the 17th hole.

“Definitely a lot of pressure coming into this week just thinking about Solheim right after this event,” Park said. “I’m pretty persistent with what I want. If I want something I try really hard to get it.”

“Hopefully maybe tomorrow or this week or someday I can break my own personal record,” she said.

Park has spent the last two years trying to qualify for her first Solheim Cup. And while she’s made a valiant effort, with five top 10s and her first victory on Tour, her fate comes down to the final qualifying event for Team USA – this week’s CP Women’s Open. Team USA’s automatic qualifying spots will be finalized upon the completion of play on Sunday and Captain Juli Inkster will name her two captain’s picks afterwards. 

Park is in a fight for one of two Rolex Rankings qualifying spots, awarded to the two highest-ranked Americans who have not already qualified via the Solheim Cup point standings.

Angel Yin sits ahead of Park in the Rolex Rankings at No. 32 and is likely to receive one of the two automatic qualifying spots. Park and Austin Ernst are nearly tied in the rankings and are vying for the last remaining qualifying spot. Ernst at No. 41 in the world holds 2.23 points, barely ahead of Park, ranked No. 42 with 2.22 points. Park would have to rely on one of Juli Inkster’s captain’s picks should she fail to move past Ernst in the standings come Sunday. 

“It’s a tough, tough spot for her even just telling some players no. I don’t know if that would be me or not,” Park said about Inkster’s decision. “If I am not the pick, I know that her judgement is for the best for the team. Whether I’m playing or not I root for the team and always USA.” 

Following the first round of the CP Women’s Open, Park may not need to rely on a pick. She is in the driver’s seat at the top of the leaderboard with Ernst opening with a round of 6-over par, 78.

 

Rolex Rankings No. 42 Annie Park (65)

  • Park’s first-round 65 is tied for the third-best round of her LPGA Tour career; she twice shot 63 at the ShopRite LPGA Classic, has two 64s and two other 65s
  • She hit 11 of 14 fairways and 15 of 18 greens, with 25 putts
  • This is Park’s fourth season on the LPGA Tour; she won the 2018 ShopRite LPGA Classic
  • This is Park’s 20th event of the 2019 LPGA Tour season; her best finish is a tie for third at the HUGEL-AIR PREMIA LA Open and has three top-10 finishes
  • She is competing in her fourth CP Women’s Open; her best finish is a tie for 51st in 2018

Rolex Rankings No. 121 Pajaree Anannarukarn (66)  

  • Anannarukarn’s first-round 66 is tied for the best round of her LPGA Tour career; she previously shot a 66 in the second round of the 2019 Walmart NW Arkansas Championship
  • She hit 10 of 14 fairways and 16 of 18 greens, with 29 putts
  • Anannarukarn is a 2019 LPGA Tour rookie
  • This is Anannarukarn’s 14th event of the 2019 LPGA Tour season; her best finish is a tie for 12th at the LOTTE Championship
  • She is competing in her first CP Women’s Open

Rolex Rankings No. 173 Nicole Broch Larsen (66)  

  • Broch Larsen’s first-round 66 is tied for the third-best round of her LPGA Tour career; she has two 64s, three 65s and two other 66s, including in the third round of the 2017 CP Women’s Open
  • She hit 11 of 14 fairways and 17 of 18 greens, with 29 putts
  • Broch Larsen is in her third season on the LPGA Tour; her best finish is a tie for third at the CP Women’s Open
  • This is Broch Larsen’s 16th event of the 2019 LPGA Tour season; her best finish is a tie for 10th at the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship
  • She is competing in her third CP Women’s Open; she tied for third in 2017 and missed the cut in 2018

Rolex Rankings No. 1 Jin Young Ko (66) 

  • She hit 11 of 14 fairways and 16 of 18 greens, with 29 putts
  • Ko is in her second season on the LPGA Tour; she has five career victories, including the 2019 Bank of Hope Founders Cup, 2019 ANA Inspiration and 2019 Evian Championship
  • This is Ko’s 17th event of the 2019 LPGA Tour season; she is the only three-time winner of the season, taking victories at the Bank of Hope Founders Cup, ANA Inspiration and Evian Championship
  • She is competing in her second CP Women’s Open; she tied for 23rd in 2018

Rolex Rankings No. 317 Anne-Catherine Tanguay (66)

  • Tanguay’s first-round 66 is tied for the best round of her LPGA Tour career; she previously shot a 66 in the first round of the 2019 ISPS Handa Vic Open
  • Tanguay has had LPGA Tour status since 2016, but spent 2017 primarily on the Symetra Tour; her best finish is a tie for 11th at the 2019 ShopRite LPGA Classic
  • This is Tanguay’s 14th event of the 2019 LPGA Tour season; her best finish is a tie for 11th at the ShopRite LPGA Classic
  • She is competing in her fifth CP Women’s Open; her best finish is a tie for 46th in 2018

Rolex Rankings No. 8 Brooke Henderson (66)

  • Henderson’s first-round 66 is tied for her best opening round at the CP Women’s Open; she also shot a first-round 66 en route to victory in 2018
  • This is Henderson’s fifth season on the LPGA Tour; she has nine career victories, which is the most of any Canadian professional golfer on the PGA and LPGA Tours
  • This is Henderson’s 20th event of the 2019 LPGA Tour season; she has wins at the LOTTE Championship and the Meijer LPGA Classic, and has six other top-10 finishes
  • She is competing in her eighth CP Women’s Open; she won in 2018, becoming the second Canadian winner in championship history