The weekend has arrived at the AIG Women’s Open as Ally Ewing holds a five-stroke lead at 10 under par after 36 holes. American compatriot Andrea Lee, US Women’s Open runner-up Charley Hull, and Japan’s Minami Katsu form the closest chase group at five under.
Chevron Championship winner Lilia Vu put herself in contention for the first time since her major title, sitting at four under alongside three others trying to make up ground on Saturday at Walton Heath.
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Multiple big names, however, are packing their bags early from the final major championship of the 2023 season, with the cut projected at two over with only a handful of players remaining on the course as the sun sets in England. Here are seven notable players to miss the weekend.
Brooke Henderson (75-72, three over)
Henderson had improved at every major this season, with a T-23 at the Chevron, T-15 at the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship, 12th place at the US Women’s Open, and a runner-up at the Amundi Evian Championship. That run stopped after reaching only eight greens in regulation on Thursday and 19 total for the week.
Yuka Saso (74-73, three over)
The 2021 US Women’s Open champion had back-to-back top- 3s in majors, and arrived as one of the most in-form players on tour. But a second round with four bogeys and only hitting four fairways resulted in Saso missing the cut.
Ashleigh Buhai (74-73, three over)
The defending champion’s title defense ended in only two rounds. Her five bogeys in her one-over scorecard Friday proved one too many to make the weekend. The last player to defend the Women’s Open was Yani Tseng, who won in 2010 and 2011.
Patty Tavatanakit (79-68, three over)
Tavatanakit started the tournament on Thursday by going four over through her first three holes and ended up at nine over with eight bogeys or worse. Friday’s 11-stroke improvement just barely wasn’t enough to get the 2020 Chevron winner into the weekend the week after playing in the final group at the Freed Women’s Scottish Open, where she finished T-6.
Lydia Ko (74-74, four over)
Despite Ko birdieing three of her final five holes, the late charge didn’t bring the Kiwi to the weekend. This season is the first, dating back to 2012, that Ko did not finish in the top 10 at a major. Her best result this year was a T-33 at the US Women’s Open.
Jennifer Kupcho (78-70, four over)
Even with an impressive eight-stroke turnaround, Kupcho couldn’t recover from her birdie-free six-over first round. The 2022 Chevron winner only made one cut at the majors this season, a T-14 at the Evian two weeks ago.
Lexi Thompson (76-75, seven over)
This week marks the sixth missed cut of the season for Thompson, the most in any year of her career. With missing out on the chance to add to her Team USA Solheim points total, the current American player standings would knock her out of the seventh and final place on the team earned through points, as both Ewing and Lee would pass her.