American golfer, Danielle Kang shot a bogey-free 64 to secure a one-shot lead after the opening round of the Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions in Florida.
Kang opened the year with a bogey-free, 7-under 64 to gain a one-shot lead over Jessica Korda, Nelly Korda, as well as defending champion Gaby Lopez, at Four Seasons Golf and Sports Club Orlando.
The 28-year-old golfer is coming off a two-win season last year that was cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic, having won back-to-back in Ohio when the LPGA resumed after a five-month shutdown.
The world No 5 carded seven birdies in a remarkable showing at the Tranquilo Golf Course in Orlando to start strongly at the opening LPGA Tour event of the year, where only winners from the previous three seasons are eligible to participate.
Jessica Korda is one of Kang’s strongest challengers and currently sits on six under alongside her sister Nelly Korda. While defending champion Gaby Lopez, and Brittany Lincicome are two off the pace alongside Stacy Lewis.
Kang, who is a five-time winner on the LPGA Tour, posted consecutive birdies from the second and chipped in from just off the ninth green to reach the turn in 31. Then she took advantage of the par-fives 10th and 13th to get to five under.
She followed it up with a long-range birdie at the 14th, which was followed by a tap-in at the 16th. Which then moved Kang into the solo lead before the 28-year-old closed her perfect start to 2021 with back-to-back pars.
Kang, who is currently No. 5 in the women’s world ranking, had to quarantine twice in recent weeks after she was exposed to COVID-19 and just arrived at Orlando late Monday night. She had tested negative six times before being allowed to play.
Written by: Collins Nwokolo