by Jeff Skinner
Calm conditions on the Firth of Forth offered the women of the Women’s British Open a chance to card low scores and many of them took advantage of a relatively defenseless St. Andrews.
At the time of this writing American Morgan Pressel stood in the lead alone at six under par. Her six under par 66 is a score rarely seen under the normal windy conditions at the Old Course.
2013 Grand Slam candidate, Inbee Park is three back of the lead at -3. Park had a great front none as she went out in a five under 31 but the back nine proved a much sterner test for the world number one. Two bogeys and a double on the 16th hole matched with two birdies gave her a two over 38. But with three rounds remaining she is well positioned.
Native Scot Catriona Matthew is one of only two Scots in the championship and she gave the Scots something to cheer about with her four under 68 and a tie for seventh. If Matthew can be called the “Hometown Favorite” another player that may have a slight affinity for the Old Course is current world number two Stacy Lewis.
Lewis opened with a five under 67 and did it with an amazing 31, bogey free back nine. Lewis has a history at St. Andrews. As a member of the American Curtis Cup Team in 2007 she led the victorious Americans with a 5-0 record, the first ever to achieve that mark in Curtis Cup competition. Lewis spoke of her appreciation of the Old Course“ I love this course. I loved it when I played Curtis Cup here. I feel so comfortable here. It’s a much different feeling to any other British Open I’ve ever played because I know the golf course.
“Usually you go to an Open and you have no clue where all the bunkers are and things like that.”
The first time the women played at St. Andrews Lorena Ochoa took honors. This time Lewis is looking to re-live that Curtis Cup success and stand on the eighteenth green on Sunday night with another major championship trophy in her hands.