Sorenstam leads in Samsung Challenge

Annika Sorenstam leads the Samsung World Challenge tournament after the first round at 8-under.

updated: February 25, 2007 10:52 IST
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Palm Desert:

Michelle Wie shot a 2-under, 70 in her professional debut Thursday, in the first round of the Samsung World Challenge in Palm Desert, California. That left her at 2-under par, six shots behind the leader. While most of the attention was on the young teenage sensation, it is Annika Sorenstam who leads the tournament, at 8-under. Sorenstam, who has won this event before, putted for birdie on the 3rd hole, but the ball stayed on the lip. Then, as the 'super Swede' looked toward the gallery, the ball fell into the cup. Sorenstam was pleasantly surprised, and that birdie lowered her score into red numbers, at 1-under par. Cristie Kerr and Gloria Park share 2nd place at 7-under after Thursday's opening round. Kerr played one of the better approach shots of the day on the 5th hole. The two shot 65 for the opening round. Michelle Wie later made birdie on the 7th hole, and her score was then 2-under par. Wie's best putt of the day, however, came on the 10th hole, where the native of Honolulu, Hawaii sank a 20-foot birdie putt. That lowered her score to 3-under par. She would shoot a 2-under, 70 for her first round as a professional. Wie wound up in a tie for 12th among the 20-player field, dropping shots on two of the last five holes with a tee shot that caromed off the trees on the 14th, and hitting twice into bunkers on the closing hole. Wie played 24 times on the LPGA Tour, and competed five times against the men during an amateur career in which she spent more time playing against the pros. (AP)