Hinako Shibuno claimed a three-stroke lead following the second round of the U.S. Women’s Open, where the Japanese golfer is eyeing her second major title.
Shibuno broke through for her maiden major triumph at last year’s Women’s British Open – the 22-year-old’s first tournament outside of Japan.
She looked comfortable on day two of the rescheduled U.S. Women’s Open due to the coronavirus pandemic, carding a four-under-par 67 in Houston on Friday.
Shibuno had six birdies to go with two bogeys on the Champions Golf Course Jackrabbit as she entered the weekend seven under through 36 holes.
Nothing but net says @Kstupples!
— U.S. Women’s Open (USGA) (@uswomensopen) December 11, 2020
“No pressure whatsoever,” Shibuno said afterwards. “I’m playing a major in the United States, unlike when I was at the British Open, where I feel like I am starting from scratch.”
Swedish amateur Linn Grant posted back-to-back 69s to be within three shots of Shibuno, while fellow amateur Kaitlyn Papp, Megan Khang (69) and overnight leader Amy Olson (72) are a stroke further back at the halfway stage of the event.
Defending champion and South Korean Lee Jeong-eun is even par ahead of the final two rounds after shooting a 69.