Golf: Lydia Ko tied for second in France

World No 1 amateur Lydia Ko has a real chance of winning her first major at the Evian Championship in France. Photo / Getty Images.
World No 1 amateur Lydia Ko has a real chance of winning her first major at the Evian Championship in France. Photo / Getty Images.

World No 1 amateur golfer Lydia Ko is only one stroke back heading into the final round of the Evian Championship in France.

The 16-year-old from the Gulf Harbour Country Club carded a superb four-under par 67 in round two - including two birdies in the final two holes - overnight to move into a share of second place with Norway's Suzann Pettersen on a seven-under par total.

The pair trails Japan's Mika Miyazato who carded a two-under par 69 and is searching her first major title.

American Stacey Lewis is one shot further back as she looks to win back-to-back major title after claiming the Women's British Open at St Andrews.

The four-round tournament was cut to 54 holes after rain left the greens soggy. The course dried out somewhat on Saturday but more showers are forecast for the final round.

The New Zealand Women's Open champion recorded four birdies in a bogey-free round that once again outclassed the best women's professionals in the world.

Her only problem seemed to be her glasses which did not co-operate in the weather.

"I'm having to clean all the time,'' she told reporters. "I really want to get contacts. Cars have got wipers, they should design one for glasses. I would myself if I could.''

Ko feels like she is playing as well as she did two weeks ago when she successfully defended her Canadian Open title to become the youngest player to win twice on the LPGA Tour.

"I definitely gave myself a lot of opportunities,'' she said. "Hopefully it will be a good day tomorrow. But I can't hit it as good as I did today every single day''

The record-breaking teenager, who has a best finish in a major of a tie for 17th at this year's LPGA Championship, has a great chance of becoming the first New Zealand woman to win a major championship.

Ko trails by one, the same position she was in heading into the final round of her Canadian Open title defence, where she went onto defeat the world-class field by five strokes.

The chance to become the youngest major champion is something that is not lost on Ko.

"It would be amazing - I would love to win a major championship,'' Ko said ahead of the tournament.

"You obviously want to play well at them [majors] but the level of play is very high because the best players in the world are here. I just try to stay focused on my own game and what I can do.''

American Morgan Pressel, who won the 2007 Kraft Nabisco Championship at the age of 18 years, 10 months and nine days, is the youngest women's major champion and Tom Morris, who claimed the 1868 British Open when he was aged 17 years, five months and eight days, is the youngest men's champion.

Ko has continued her remarkable record in professional events and has not missed a cut in 25 starts.

She has backed up breakthrough international season in 2012 superbly this year. Ko has finished in the top-five on six occasions, claimed two titles and now has a great chance of winning her first major.

- APNZ

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