On the ﬁrst day of four-ball matches, England picked up three points thanks to a convincing 4&3 win by Jodi Ewart Shadoﬀ and Bronte Law while Georgia Hall and Charley Hull fought back tenaciously from 3-down with ﬁve to play to earn a valuable point against Australia at the UL International Crown.
The Swedes ended the day with two points after a win and a loss against the defending champions, the USA.
The tried-and-tested pairing of Caroline Hedwall and Anna Nordqvist got oﬀ to a blazing start against Michelle Wie and Jessica Korda with four birdies to go 4-up after ﬁve holes. But the Americans hit back with Wie picking up birdies on the 6th, 8th, 12th and 13th to put her team right back in contention.
Hedwall admitted the pair struggled after the US pulled it back to all-square saying Nordqvist’s 20” birdie putt on the par-4 14th was the key. She said: “It was nice to get the job done and put a point on the board for Sweden.”
Nordqvist, who birdied the last to seal the win said: “We made some key putts when needed to and once we began to struggle Caroline held us together. The course challenged all of us.”
It was a diﬀerent story for their compatriots Pernilla Lindberg and Madelene Sagstrom who came up against the highly successful pair Cristie Kerr and Lexi Thompson.
Never ahead in the contest, they levelled after going 2-down through 7 before eventually losing 2 down. Sagstrom said: “We really struggled to ﬁnd any momentum and never really gave ourselves enough chances. They played better than us and were steadier.”
The highlight of the day was almost certainly Hull’s near-miss at the par-3 8th where her tee-shot hit the pin and lipped out to six inches costing her a swanky BMW on oﬀer for an ace.
While Hull was left rueing her misfortune, Law and Ewart Shadoﬀ dovetailed perfectly to outplay their opponents. “It was all about staying patient and playing strategically,” said Ewart Shadoﬀ.
Always in front, Ewart Shadoﬀ rolled in two superb putts on the par-4 9th and 10th to put England ﬁrmly in control. Law added: “We worked really well as a team and never got ahead of ourselves. It was great playing for England and not ourselves.”
Hull and Hall seized an early advantage but found Minjee Lee and Sarah Jane Smith in great form and the Australians moved in to a commanding position to lead 3-up after 13.
“We knew we had to go for it” said Hall. “I chipped in for eagle on the drivable par-4 14th and that was turning point.” The British Open champion went on to birdie the last two holes to salvage a point leaving the Australians desperately disappointed.
Korea was the only team to ﬁnish with a maximum four points after shutting out Chinese Taipei living up to their billing as hot favourites to capture their ﬁrst UL International Crown.
Due to the impending forecast of Typhoon Kong-Rey, Friday’s matches have been brought forward with Round 3 starting as soon as possible following their completion.
Pool A – England vs. Australia
Charley Hull/Georgia Hall (ENG) halved with Minjee Lee/Sarah Jane Smith (AUS)
Bronte Law/Jodi Ewart Shadoff (ENG) d. Katherine Kirk/Su Oh (AUS), 4 and 3
Points – England, 3; Australia, 1
Pool B – Japan vs. Thailand
Nasa Hataoka/Ayako Uehara (JPN) halved with Moriya Jutanugarn/Pornanong Phatlum (THA)
Ariya Jutanugarn/Sherman Santiwiwatthanaphong (THA) def. Misuzu Narita/Mamiko Higa (JPN), 2 and 1
Points – Japan, 1; Thailand, 3
Pool B – United States vs. Sweden
Cristie Kerr/Lexi Thompson (USA) def. Pernilla Lindberg/Madelene Sagstrom (SWE), 2 up
Anna Nordqvist/Caroline Hedwall (SWE) def. Jessica Korda/Michelle Wie (USA), 2 up
Points – United States, 2; Sweden, 2
Pool A – Republic of Korea vs. Chinese Taipei
Sung Hyun Park/In-Kyung Kim (KOR) def. Candie Kung/Phoebe Yao (TPE), 1 up
In Gee Chun/So Yeon Ryu (KOR) def. Teresa Lu/Wei-Ling Hsu (TPE), 2 up
Points – Republic of Korea, 4; Chinese Taipei, 0
Pool B – Japan (JPN) vs. Sweden (SWE)
7:05 a.m. – Misuzu Narita/Mamiko Higa (JPN) vs. Anna Nordqvist/Caroline Hedwall (SWE)
7:20 a.m. – Ayako Uehara/Nasa Hataoka (JPN) vs. Pernilla Lindberg/Madelene Sagstrom (SWE)
Pool B – United States (USA) vs. Thailand (THA)
7:35 a.m. – Jessica Korda/Michelle Wie (USA) vs. Moriya Jutanugarn/Pornanong Phatlum (THA)
7:50 a.m. – Cristie Kerr/Lexi Thompson (USA) vs. Ariya Jutanugarn/Sherman Santiwiwattahanaphong (THA)
Pool A – England (ENG) vs. Chinese Taipei (TPE)
8:05 a.m. – Charley Hull/Georgia Hall (ENG) vs. Wei-Ling Hsu/Teresa Lu (TPE)
8:20 a.m. – Bronte Law/Jodi Ewart Shadoff (ENG) vs. Candie Kung/Phoebe Yao (TPE)
Pool A – Republic of Korea (KOR) vs. Australia (AUS)
8:35 a.m. – So Yeon Ryu/In Gee Chun (KOR) vs. Minjee Lee/Sarah Jane Smith (AUS)
8:50 a.m. – Sung Hyun Park/In-Kyung Kim (KOR) vs. Su Oh/Katherine Kirk (AUS)