Golf: Lee6 ties Majors record, takes lead at Evian Championship with a 10-under 61

Lee6 Jeong-eun in Texas on July 5, 2021. The winner of the US Women's Open in 2019, Lee6 had 10 birdies and no bogeys on July 23.
Lee6 Jeong-eun in Texas on July 5, 2021. The winner of the US Women's Open in 2019, Lee6 had 10 birdies and no bogeys on July 23.PHOTO: AFP

PARIS (REUTERS) - Lee6 Jeong-eun birdied her final four holes on Friday (July 23) at the Amundi Evian Championship to shoot a 10-under 61 and tie the lowest round ever in Major championship history.

She led after the second round with a 36-hole total of 15-under 127. That also was a record for two rounds in a men's or women's Major championship, breaking the 128 shot by Brooks Koepka at the 2019 PGA Championship. South Korean Chun In-gee shot a 129 at the 2016 Evian Championship.

Lee6, 25, tied the 61 fired by another South Korean, Kim Hyo-joo, in the 2014 Evian in Evian-Les-Bains, France.

The winner of the US Women's Open in 2019, Lee6 had 10 birdies and no bogeys on Friday to hold a three-stroke lead over Thais Ariya Jutanugarn (63) and Pajaree Anannarukarn (65). Lee6 needed only 23 putts over 18 holes.

"I had a lot of birdie chances," she said. "I could play easily. My putting was really, really good, so, yeah, that's it."

"Every putt looked like it was going to go in," said her caddie, David Buhai. "It was incredible. Not one nerve. Speed was just perfect.

"I had the best seat in the house and I just kept my mouth shut."

Jutanugarn stayed hot on the heels of Lee6 after collecting six birdies and an eagle to card a 63 on Friday. She eagled her closing hole for the second straight day.

"I'm pretty lucky to make eagle last hole. I feel good right now about making it," Jutanugarn said. "I want to keep building on that. I will say mostly my commitment. I feel like I was getting better today, but I can still get better."

Anannarukarn also recorded an eagle at No. 18 to cap her round of 65, matching her score from Thursday's first round.

"I didn't change any strategy out there," she said. "I stick to what I play the first round and, yeah, that worked out today. It's all good."

New Zealand's Lydia Ko (65), who won the 2015 Evian tournament, and 19-year-old Yealimi Noh (68) are tied for fourth place at nine under for the tournament.

Japan's Ayaka Furue (68) resides one stroke back.

Defending champion Ko Jin-young, who won the title in 2019, rebounded from an opening-round 72 with a one-under 69 on Friday. She is tied for 40th place at one under.