20 Sep 2020 | Professional golf |

Green has back-to-back in mind

by Martin Blake

Hannah Green Portland r3 image
Hannah Green drives during her second-round 68 today. Photo: Getty

Perth’s Hannah Green has back-to-back Portland Classic wins on her mind after she played her way into the final group today.

Green began the second round of the 54-holer in Oregon with a share of the lead, and promptly posted a 68 that put her well out on top. Late in the day she was reeled in and overtaken by England’s Mel Reid, and they will go head-to-head at Columbia Edgewater Country Club tomorrow.

Reid is at 12-under and Green 10-under with a day to play. Korean Amy Yang and American Amy Olson at nine-under also are well in the mix.

Reid, who turned 33 today, has never won on the LPGA Tour but she is a regular Solheim Cup player for Europe and an ISPS Handa Vic Open winner from 2017. She shot 65 in the second round and her wedge to tap-in range at the 18th sent a strong message to the rest of the field.

Green won this title last year in a season where she became just the third major champion among Australian women behind Karrie Webb and Jan Stephenson. This is her first title defence, because the other – the Women’s PGA Championship – was delayed because of the pandemic break, and won’t be played until early next month.

The Australian, ranked No. 22 in the world, had six birdies and two bogeys after he opening 65 on Friday, finishing it with a long birdie putt that dropped on the 18th.

“I got off to such a great start, so always hard to back up a low round,” she said. “Really happy with my last putt. Holed a long bomb there, so gives me another positive momentum for tomorrow.

“Yes, hopefully I can get the pace of the greens a little bit better and give myself opportunities to make birdie.”

Green said her memories of 2019 at this venue were helping her. “I guess it's kind of easy for me because I have such great memories and because you go so low at this golf course. I can remember when I made great putts and made birdies.

“But I had a really good pairing this week. I played with Austin (Ernst) and Leona (Maguire), so we were chatting a lot. It was a little bit slow out there, so we had a lot of time to talk and wait over shots. So I think it was actually really good. Took my time over shots more than I would if we were rushing a little bit.”

Minjee Lee and Sarah Kemp, both even-par, were the other Australians to make the cut.

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