tampabay.com

Neumann regains her lead with 67

By wire services
Published November 13, 2005


MOBILE, Ala. - Liselotte Neumann made a 15-foot birdie putt at the 18th hole for 5-under 67 Saturday and a one-stroke lead after three rounds of the LPGA Tournament of Champions.

With the closing birdie Neumann, the first-round leader, broke out of a four-way tie and moved into the lead at 11-under 205 on the Magnolia Grove Golf Club's Crossings Course.

Defending champion Heather Daly-Donofrio had 68 and joined second-round co-leader Rachel Hetherington (72) and Christina Kim (72), the other second-round co-leader, at 10-under 206. Hetherington and Kim shared the lead and a four-stroke advantage heading into the third round.

Juli Inkster, looking for her first victory since the 2003 Evian Masters, birdied No. 18 for 68 and moved within three strokes of the lead at 8 under.

Neumann birdied four of her first six holes to erase a four-shot deficit and take the lead.

"It's interesting how it works out sometimes," said Neumann, 39. "Someone up in the lead could have shot 2, 3 or 4 under and I still would have been quite a ways behind. If you shoot 5 or 6 under, you figure that you are going to hopefully catch up to someone."

Neumann won the event in 1996 at Orlando and finished 10th last year. She qualified for the field of 43 LPGA winners from the past four years and Hall of Fame members with her victory at the 2004 Asahi Ryokuken Championship.

Tiger nears the lead, deals with crowds

SHANGHAI, China - Tiger Woods, playing his first official stroke-play event in China, shot 5-under-par 67 and enters the final round of the European PGA Tour's HSBC Champions tournament one stroke behind second-round co-leader David Howell (68). Woods was tied for second at 15-under 201 with second-round co-leader Nick O'Hern (67).

More than 1,000 people tracked Woods' group around the Sheshan International Golf Club course, with the crowd at least doubling at some holes. The new $5-million tournament is the richest in Asia.

"Considering this is the biggest golfing event they've ever had, I think it would be very special to have your name associated with that," he said.

Woods has taken time this weekend to educate fans and photographers. Golf in China was nearly nonexistent 20 years ago, but the country hosted six European tour events in 2005. With the sudden rise comes confusion about etiquette, such as cell phones and photos during backswings.

At the first hole Woods loosened the grip on his driver, turned and asked the gallery to "hold the cameras." He interceded when a woman started moving while playing partner Kenneth Ferrie was lining up a crucial putt on No. 4. Woods called out courteously: "Ma'am, hold still - please!"

His patience ran out on the 12th tee, where he glared at a photographer after having to check his swing. The camera was taken by a security guard.

After the round, Woods said he prefers the Presidents Cup to the Ryder Cup, insisting there is better camaraderie and more sportsmanship.

FRANKLIN TEMPLETON SHOOTOUT: Fred Couples and Adam Scott used six straight birdies in the best-ball format to shoot 11-under 61 for a two-stroke lead heading into today's final round of the postseason event at Naples.