Modest start for Aditi Ashok on LPGA

India’s Aditi Ashok carded a modest three-over 74 in the opening round to lie tied 72nd at The Ascendant LPGA here. The Indian had just one birdie against four bogeys.

Aditi, starting on the back nine, had a rough run from 14th to 18th with three bogeys and then had one more bogey on the second to go 4-over. She did pull back a shot with a birdie on the sixth. She will now need a good solid second round to make the cut. China’s Xiyu Lin holed a 10-foot eagle putt on the par-5 17th hole to card 6-under 65 and take a one-shot lead ahead of Atthaya Thitikul (66) and Lizette Salas (66).

Atthaya Thitikul can become the World No. 1 in the women’s world ranking with a win this week. Thitikul won in Arkansas last week for her second LPGA title this season. If she wins this week, the 19-year-old Thai can replace Jin Young Ko at the top of the ranking.

Lexi Thompson, who has not won for three years, had a chance to share the lead with a birdie on her final hole at Old American Golf Club. She dropped a bogey and had to settle for being in the group at 67. Thitikul is one of two players who has a chance to move to No. 1 ahead of Ko. The other is Nelly Korda, but she opened with a 75.

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