Eight years after contesting her first Australian Open as a 12-year-old, Melbourne’s Su Oh says she a fighting chance of winning her first national championship.
Oh enters the final round just two shots shy of the lead after shooting a stellar five-under in Saturday’s third round at Royal Adelaide.
American Lizette Salas is the pacesetter at 10-under with Australian Sarah Jane Smith nine-under, and Oh joined in third place by Thailand’s Pornanong Phatlum at eight-under.
Oh carded 68 – Saturday’s low round – on a day when only a dozen golfers broke par in testing winds.
Korean-born Oh played her first Australian Open in 2009 – she remarkably shot rounds of 79 and 81 as a year seven student.
Now aged 20, Oh says she’s well-placed for her first LPGA Tour title and the Australian Open crown.
“There are still 18 holes to go … but it’s my national title so I really want to fight for it,” Oh said.
“It’s going to be tough but it would mean a lot. You can’t really put a word to that.”
After mastering the testy third-round conditions, the world No.70 is one of few golfers hoping the winds return again on Sunday.
“I played pretty well today so I’m kind of hoping it will be windy tomorrow … I’m feeling pretty comfortable in the wind,” Oh said.
Fellow Australians Minjee Lee, Hannah Green and Rebecca Artis are all three-under but compatriot Katherine Kirk’s chances blew away in the wind with a seven-over 80 to drop to even par.
World No.1 Lydia Ko is also even par, though not discounting her chances after a luckless opening three rounds with the putter.
“My stroke was good and not many putts went in,” Ko said.
“Hopefully I’m just saving it up for tomorrow … there are so many good things that are going right that hopefully it will all be able to come together.”
Defending champion Haru Nomura is in contention for consecutive titles – the Japanese native is six-under after a four-under round on Saturday.