Last year’s British Open champion Hinako Shibuno made four birdies on the back nine to seize the lead after the second round of US Women’s Open in Houston, Texas.
The 22-year-old from Japan carded a four-under par 67 for a three-stroke lead over another early finisher, Sweden’s Linn Grant (69), recovering from two bogeys on the Jackrabbit course, one of two layouts being used at Champions Golf Club due to diminished daylight hours.
American Amy Olson ceded her first-round lead after a trio of bogeys and a double-bogey on the par-four 15 saw her carding a disappointing one-over 72, finishing her round tied for fourth with compatriots Kaitlyn Papp and Megan Khang.
The best of the Australian challenge was remarkably from 20-year-old amateur Gabriela Ruffels, who shot 72 to be one-over par after the second round.
With the projected cut at three-over, compatriots Su Oh, Hannah Green and Minjee Lee have all just snuck in.
Oh fought back with a one-under 70 after an opening 75 while Lee improved her first-round effort by three shots to shoot 71.
Green, the 2019 Women’s PGA Championship winner, made 73 – all three are at three-over for the tournament.
Sarah Jane Smith and Katherine Kirk both missed the cut, their chances cruelled by poor opening rounds.
With rain in the forecast, the USGA moved up tee times by two hours and 20 minutes in an attempt to get the round completed.
As was the case on Thursday, it sent golfers off the first and 10th tees at Cypress Creek and Jackrabbit to help finish the round.