Jodi Ewart Shadoff opened with a 7-under-par 66 to take a one-shot lead in the Women's Australian Open on Thursday in Adelaide.
Shadoff, seeking her first LPGA Tour win, was one stroke better than Inbee Park and Jeongeun Lee6 (67). Defending champion Nelly Korda is three shots back.
Ewart Shadoff held the lead with a first-round 65 in this event last year. On Thursday, the 32-year-old Englishwoman took advantage of the prime scoring conditions at Royal Adelaide Golf Club, shooting a bogey-free round that ended with consecutive birdies.
"I really love the golf courses here. I played well last year. I played well here when it was here a couple of years ago, too," said Ewart Shadoff. "I think just go out there tomorrow and try and do the same thing."
Park opened her round by dropping in an eagle with a gap wedge from 113 yards on No. 1.
"I didn't see it actually going in, but it was right on line. I thought it was going to be pretty close. But everybody was screaming so I was like, yeah, it must be in," said Park. "That was my second eagle of the year. So, I had an eagle last week as well in Australia. So, two for Australia."
The event is the only one on the LPGA schedule for the next four weeks after the tour canceled events in Thailand, China and Singapore over coronavirus fears.
Americans Marina Alex, Amy Olson and Jillian Hollis are tied for fourth at 5 under.
Ewart Shadoff hit 15 of 15 fairways and needed only 26 putts to get around the course Thursday. In her 10th season on tour, she has never finished better than second (twice). She has 20 top-10 finishes.
"I feel ready now. I feel like every part of my game is up to the challenge," she said. "It's hopefully going to be a good year and hopefully get that win."
--Field Level Media