Yani Tseng wins Taifong
Taiwan’s top-ranked female golfer Yani Tseng claimed the title yesterday at the Taiwan LPGA Tour Taifong Ladies Open in Changhua County, winning the top prize of NT$2 million (US$66,000). Tseng, the former world No. 1 female golfer, who now ranks 39th in the world, climbed from being tied for fourth place in the second round to win the title. The three-round, 54-hole tournament drew 99 professional players from 10 countries with a total of NT$6,800,000 in prize money.
Woodland leads, Tiger out
Gary Woodland made five birdies on another tough day of scoring on San Diego, California’s Torrey Pines’ South Course for a two-under 70 and a one-shot lead over 20-year-old Jordan Spieth and Marc Leishman of Australia in the Farmers Insurance Open on Saturday. The final round will not include defending champion Tiger Woods, an eight-time winner at Torrey Pines, as he went seven straight holes making bogey or worse on his way to a 79. That not only matched his highest score on US soil, but he failed to make the 54-hole cut. Woods had said at the start of the week that he has not seen Torrey this tough since the US Open he won in 2008. Spieth had a one-shot lead to start the third round and it was gone quickly. He missed a 30-inch par putt on the opening hole and took a double bogey on No. 5. His biggest putt might have been a 6-footer for par on the 14th, and Spieth looked confident the rest of the way to salvage a 75. Leishman had a relatively boring round of 72 on a gorgeous day along the Pacific — one birdie, one bogey, 16 pars.
Choi leads in Bahamas
South Korea’s Choi Na-yeon birdied three of her last four holes on Saturday to seize a one-shot third-round lead at the season-opening Bahamas LPGA Classic. The seven-time LPGA Tour winner posted a seven-under-par 66 for a 15-under total of 204 and had a one-stroke lead over American Lizette Salas — whose own 66 put her on 205. “I think the last three rounds I had a really good swing,” Choi said. “I had so many solid shots out there. I missed two greens today. Only two, but I hit a putt from the fringe, so obviously I haven’t chipped the last two rounds. I was working really hard during the off-season with my coach. Seeing results this quickly, I’ve been feeling really good about it.” Overnight leader Jessica Korda and playing partner Paula Creamer both eagled the par-five 18th to grab a share of third place on 12-under 207. Korda carded a 72. Her eagle at the last, where she landed her second shot within two feet, helped counter a double-bogey at 13. Creamer’s closing eagle helped her overcome a triple bogey from the water at 15. She carded a 71. Stacy Lewis, the highest-ranked player in the field at number three in the world, carded a 68 and jumped into a share of fifth.
Darvish to start for Rangers
Yu Darvish will be the opening day starter for the Texas Rangers. When asked by a fan on Saturday at the team’s Fan Fest who would start the March 31 opener against Philadelphia, manager Ron Washington said he thinks “it’s obvious. It’s Darvish.” Darvish was 13-9 with a 2.93 ERA in 32 starts last season. He led the majors with 277 strikeouts and was second in the AL Cy Young Award voting. He dealt with nerve inflammation in his lower back the last six weeks of last season, but his rehab has gone well. He is still home in Japan preparing for spring training. He started the second game last season, coming within one out of a perfect game against Houston.