Colourful Jang plans new victory routine
Colourful South Korean joint-leader promises new celebration routine if she wins
Nothing outlasts the Ha-Na-giser.
She keeps going and going and going.
In January, 23-year-old South Korean Jang Ha Na - she concocted her own monicker - became the first LPGA Tour golfer to hit a hole-in-one on a par-four when she made an albatross on the 218-yard eighth hole during the third round of the Pure Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic.
Last month, she finally ended a six-year excruciating wait for her first LPGA Tour title when she won the Coates Golf Championship.
It just keeps getting better for the 1.65m-tall pocket dynamo as she fired a bogey-free six-under 66 in the second round of the HSBC Women's Champions at Sentosa Golf Club yesterday to share the halfway lead with compatriot Lee Mi Rim at eight under.
Although she was decked in a camouflage-floral top - similar to what she wore when she made her miracle shot in the Bahamas - there was no hiding Jang's superb form and precise putting on the Serapong Course.
After birdies on the par-four first and par-five fourth, Jang made a superb eagle on the 483-yard, par-five seventh, where she hit a three-wood approach to the fringe of the green before sinking a monster putt from 50 feet.
Not even wind and rain could stop her as she went on to record birdies on the par-three 14th and par-five 18th.
No wonder Jang was in high spirits during the interview as she explained her fashion sense: "The Singapore golf course looks like a jungle, so I wore a jungle shirt."
She felt confident enough to reveal that she has been working on a new celebration routine, which she hopes to unveil to a capacity crowd if she wins tomorrow.
"It's top secret, but it's really good and it looks very sexy," said the bubbly Jang with a giggle.
"I love big galleries. The louder the better, like when I made albatross in the Bahamas, I like it.
"The first two rounds here, I made two eagles (also on the par-five fourth on Thursday) so I feel very comfortable.
"I told myself not to think too much, just be patient, concentrate, make the birdies... don't miss, par is okay, birdie the next, just three more days, I can do it."
Lee also typified the can-do spirit with an unblemished scorecard that had five birdies from just 27 putts.
"Yeah, I just try, just straight, straight, straight and then make, make, make. No more thinking, just hit," said the 25-year-old who is a two-time winner on the LPGA Tour.
Indeed, the Seoul Sisters are definitely making an impact at this tournament, with four South Koreans, including Amy Yang and Ahn Sun Ju who are joint-fifth at six under, in the top 10 going into the weekend.
However, world No. 1 Lydia Ko continued to struggle to find the fairways (seven in 14) and greens in regulation (12 in 18) as she carded a 74 for a one-over 145 and a share of 41st place.
Meanwhile, a host of former winners are well-poised in the top half to make a weekend charge up the leaderboard.
Paula Creamer (2014 champion) is just three shots off Jang and Lee on 139, while Stacy Lewis (2013), Park Inbee (2015), Angela Stanford (2012) and Karrie Webb (2011) are on 140, 141, 142 and 144 respectively.
Ai Miyazato, who won in 2010, may be languishing at joint-56th with a six-over 150, but still had reason to smile after making a hole-in-one at the 166-yard par-three eighth hole.
- 136: Jang Ha Na 70-66, Lee Mi Rim 69-67
- 137: Phatlum Pornanong 70-67, Suzann Pettersen 68-69
- 138: Amy Yang 71-67, Gerina Piller 70-68, Ahn Sun Ju 69-69, Feng Shanshan 69-69
- 139: Paula Creamer 72-67, Haru Nomura 71-68, Candie Kung 67-72
- 140: Stacy Lewis 71-69, Morgan Pressel 71-69, Lee Min Jee 67-73
- 141: Park In Bee 68-73
- 143: Lexi Thompson 71-72
- 145: Lydia Ko 71-74, Cristie Kerr 70-75
- 147: Michelle Wie 75-72
- 149: Koh Sock Hwee 76-73
- 150: Ai Miyazato 77-73
- 153: Tseng Ya-ni 76-77.