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Inbee Park has three-stroke lead going into Kraft Nabisco finals

April 06, 2013|By Diane Pucin
  • South Korea's Inbee Park, who has never finished higher than ninth at the Kraft Nabisco Championship, has a three-stroke leading going into the final round.
South Korea's Inbee Park, who has never finished higher than ninth… (Jeff Gross / Getty Images )

RANCHO MIRAGE -- Inbee Park, a 24-year-old from South Korea who makes her home in Murrieta now, has a three-shot lead over former USC star Lizette Salas after three rounds of the Kraft Nabisco Championship at Mission Hills Country Club.

Park, whose only major championship so far came at the 2008 U.S. Open, has never finished better than ninth at this tournament. But she shot a five-under-par 67 Saturday (her second consecutive 67) and increased what had been a one-shot lead after the second round to three shots over Salas.

Second-year pro Salas, from Azusa, finished with a three-under 69 on Saturday. Park has a three-day total of 204 and Salas is at 207.

Ranked fourth in the world, Park has a five-shot advantage over a group of six tied for third place that includes Americans Angela Stanford and Jessica Korda as well as 38-year-old Australian Karrie Webb, who won here in 2000 and 2006 and who owns seven major titles in her 18-year pro career. Webb shot a five-under 67 Saturday to move into contention. She had been tied for 21st after two rounds.

"I left myself a little bit of work after the first two days," Webb said, "but I putted really nicely today."

Webb knows about coming from behind here. When she won in 2006 she started the final round seven shots behind Lorena Ochoa. When Webb finished her round, she was four behind Park. That disadvantage ended up being six shots.

"Hopefully, at the end of the day, I'll only be four shots off, but I've overcome larger deficits at this course before. I'm just glad I have myself a chance. If we can get some breeze going tomorrow, I think that could make it interesting."

And, in fact, there is wind predicted, so Webb knows what she's talking about.


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