Supamas Defies Hilly Challenge to Lead at Panorama
Former LPGA player Supamas Sangchan took the outright lead over Kusuma Meechai by three strokes after round two of the Bt2.5 million “SAT-TWT Open Road to World Ranking at the Panorama Golf and Country Club in Nakhon Ratchasima on Thursday.
The 26-year-old who is now playing mainly on the China LPGA Tour fired five birdies against two bogeys to lead on four under-par-140 in the sixth SAT-TWT Open event of the 2021-2022 calendar which gets underway from now until August 19 at the par 72 6,229-yard course.
“I putted incredibly well not only to shoot scores but also to save some tough shots. On a par 5 hole, I drove to the woods but fought my way back to get close to the pin and made a birdie. Four under after two rounds is amazing for me,” said the Sukhothai-born who won the 2016 Sanya Ladies Open (co-sanctioned by LET) and 2017 Hong Kong Ladies Open, both on the China LPGA Tour.
“The course sets up pretty cruel this week. I have to be really focused and play one shot at a time tomorrow,” added Supamas, hoping to end a three-year drought of title since winning at the Kabinburi Sport Club in Prachinburi in March, 2019.
Three-time professional winner Kusuma swapped four birdies with four bogeys after 17 holes before sinking a finishing birdie for a 71. Her two-day score stood at one-under-par 143.
“I tried to hit the fairways, the greens and not to hit more than two putts. The course condition is very tricky especially the green speed is a lot faster than on Wednesday,” said the 27-year-old player from Prachinburi.
“Hitting an under par on a tough course like this is quite pleasing for me. About my game plan for the final round, I will try to chill out there and try not to put myself under pressure,” said Kusuma whose best attempt on the Thai WPGA was at seventh in the third circuit this year. She is also eyeing on winning her first title in three years since her victory at the Watermill Golf Club and Resort in Hua Hin in 2019.
Trichat Cheenglab carded a 69 to trail four shots behind the lead on even par 144.
“After I hit three over par in the first round, I came up with a new game plan by aiming straight to the flag positions and went for some putts up the slopes. That’s why I ended up with a 69. It would have been a bit better if I hadn’t hit some poor tee shots,” said Trichat.
“I’m feeling more confident than I was in my previous events. In the final round, I hope to hit the fairways more and may use a 3-iron on some holes. Above all, I need to play with confidence,” she added. Also with a 144 was Onkanok Soisuwan which placed her at joint third along with Trichat.