Chanokmanee and Pimnipa draw first blood for women at Thailand Mixed season finale
Women golfers Chanokmanee Charoenpattanasatit and Pimnipa Panthong got off to a flying start in the Thailand Mixed season finale at Lakeview Resort in Petchaburi, opening with rounds of 64 to share the lead on Thursday.
The women have a last chance to challenge male dominance this weekend, after all four previous tournaments this year were won by men. The battle of the sexes is taking place over four days on a par-71 course measuring 6,897 yards from the men’s tee and 6,115 yards from the women's.
The tournament is co-sanctioned by the WPGA Tour and features an impressive prize pool of 5 million baht.
Young talent Chanokmanee drew first blood, recording six birdies on the back nine and adding three more on the front. Overcoming a double bogey on the seventh, she signed off with a stunning 64.
"I owe a lot to my irons today. In fact, every aspect of my game, from my driver to my irons and putter, performed fantastically. All of my birdies came from putts within six feet," said the 19-year-old, who wants a top-10 finish this week after scoring a top-5 finish on the Thai LPGA tour this season.
Pimnipa matched her compatriot with a flawless performance during the front nine, carding five birdies for a round of 65.
"I hit my irons incredibly well on the front nine, positioning the ball in birdie zones and creating numerous opportunities. The distances on the front nine are shorter compared to the back. I focused on taking it one shot at a time without worrying about my score," said the 26-year-old.
She said she would maintain her bold approach over the weekend, crediting work on improving her mindset this year.
Former San Diego State University student Newport Laparojkit is one shot behind on 65 after sinking seven birdies against a lone bogey.
“Today I just stuck to my game plan. I wasn’t too aggressive and tried to give myself good chances for birdies. Overall, I’m happy with my performance today. I was able to make some putts to keep my momentum going," said Newport, who grew up in the United States.
Sharing second place is Nutdanai Nuangjaknin, after shooting eight birdies against two bogeys to finish on 65.
After the initial two rounds covering 36 holes, the top 60 players and those with matching scores will advance to the weekend competition.
The tournament is being broadcast live from 9am to 5pm on AIS PLAY on both iOS and Android platforms. For updates, visit TrustGolf's official Facebook and YouTube channels.