They’ve rolled the tarps off the greens, the sun’s working hard to make an appearance, misty clouds are wrapped around the peaks of the surrounding mountains, and the chicks with sticks are on the course. The Sunday Shootout at The Evian Championship has started.
The top of the leaderboard is dynamic and volatile.
Mika Miyazato (Japan), worked ranked #19, started the final round with a slim, 1-shot lead and had a shot at victory. Now, mid-way through the front 9, Miyazato had piled up 3 bogies, given up 3 strokes, and dropped down the board to 7th. Final round jitters seem to be in play for Miyazato.
Suzann Pettersen (Norway) and Lydia Ko (New Zealand) are fighting it out for the top position shot-by-shot. It looks like it may come down to who makes fewer mistakes and who sinks the last birdie putt.
Lexi Thompson (USA) picked up a string of birdies on the front 9, pushed past Stacy Lewis (USA), the South Korean trio, Chela Choi, So Yeon Ryu, and Se Ri Pak, and has the top of the board in sight. Thompson’s power drive may come in handy today. If she’s going to make a viable run at victory she needs to pile up the birdies. Thompson doesn’t have much time to get the job done at this point.
World ranked #2 Stacy Lewis (USA) is still chasing Pettersen, as she has throughout the tournament and Beatriz Recari (Spain) is making a final round bid to overtake Lewis. Lewis needs to stay focused and play carefully to keep her bid for the top alive. Recari is probably too far down the board at this point to make a successful run at victory, but she could certainly secure a top-10 finish.
There’s still golf to be played at The Evian and with the rain falling intermittently and course conditions deteriorating steadily, expect more challenges, missed shots, and short putts before the shootout comes to a close.