Patty extends lead at Honda LPGA

Patty extends lead at Honda LPGA

Thai star alone in first place, three shots up heading into final round

Patty Tavatanakit of Thailand acknowledges the gallery after holing out on the 18th green during the third round of the Honda LPGA Thailand at Siam Country Club in Chon Buri on Saturday. (Photo: Getty Images for LPGA)
Patty Tavatanakit of Thailand acknowledges the gallery after holing out on the 18th green during the third round of the Honda LPGA Thailand at Siam Country Club in Chon Buri on Saturday. (Photo: Getty Images for LPGA)

Patty Tavatanakit of Thailand heads into Sunday’s final round of the Honda LPGA Thailand 2024 tournament with a three-shot lead after another dazzling display at the Siam Country Club Old Course in Chon Buri.

The 24-year-old had five birdies and an eagle on the front nine on her way to a round of 6-under par, bringing her to 16-under for the tournament.

That puts her three shots ahead of second-round co-leader Madelene Sagstrom of Sweden, who went 3-under on the day. 

A further shot back at 12-under are Choi Hye-jin of Korea and Emily Pedersen of Denmark, who both shot 7-under par to tie for the round of the day.

Former world No.1 Ariya Jutanugarn, who in 2021 became the only Thai to win the Honda event since it began in 2006, is still very much in contention at 11-under, alongside 17-year-old Thai amateur Suvichaya Vinijchaitham and some big names including Kim Sei-young of Korea and Brooke Henderson of Canada.

Suvichaya admitted she’s been having the time of her life. “[The past three days] were great for me because on the first day I didn't expect that much, that I was going to hit it good. I just wanted to feel safe, you know? But after round three I was like, wow, this is amazing. How did I do it?”

Jaravee Boonchant and Natthakritta Vongtaveelap, last year’s runner-up to Lillia Vu of the United States, also continued their strong play and are at 10-under par after three rounds. Vu, the current world No.1 whose career really took off after last year’s Honda triumph, is another shot back at 9-under.

Patty came into this week’s tournament after a confidence-building victory at a Ladies European Tour event in Saudi Arabia last weekend, which also netted her a winner’s cheque of nearly 700,000 euros.

“I’m really proud of my performance today. It’s getting very tiring, exhausting in the heat,” she said after her round on Saturday.

“I’m just going to have fun, stay present, and be very, very busy with my process.”

On Sunday the UCLA graduate will seek her second career victory on the LPGA circuit, where she also has 15 top-10 finishes since making her pro debut in 2021.

The tournament features 72 golfers vying for a total prize purse of $1.7 million.

Ariya Jutanugarn, who won the Honda LPGA tournament 2021, is still in contention, five shots back of compatriot Patty Tavatanakit. (Photo: Getty Images for LPGA)

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