LPGA pro Angel Yin got off to a rough start in the first round of this week’s LPGA Lotte Championship. But she turned it around quickly with one of the luckiest eagles you’ll ever see, all thanks to her playing partner, or, more specifically, her playing partner’s golf ball.
Yin started Round 1 at Ko Olina Golf Club in Hawaii with three-straight bogeys on holes 10, 11 and 12. She sank a birdie at 13, but that still left her two over in the early going. Yin needed something very good to happen very fast. And it did.
After knocking her drive up near the green at the par-4 15th, Yin was left with a little wedge shot for her approach. Playing partner Pernilla Lindberg didn’t drive it quite as far as Yin but hit a beautiful approach to just a few feet. Now it was Yin’s turn to try and match Lindberg.
Yin took a hearty swipe with her wedge, and then sat back to watch the fun unfold. Her ball soared towards the green, made one big bounce, and then came crashing down on top of Lindberg’s ball. As Lindberg’s ball rocketed off the green due to the impact, Yin’s ball reversed and went in the opposite direction, right into the hole.
Thanks to the Rules of Golf, this turned out to be a win-win for both players. Yin received an eagle for her bank-shot wedge. Lindberg, on the other hand, got to replace her ball to its original location and made the shortie for birdie.
But it could have easily been much more damaging, at least for Yin. Had Yin’s ball flown off the green and Lindberg’s had gone in the hole, Yin would have been forced to play her ball as it lay in the rough beyond the green. Lindberg would have been forced to take her ball out of the cup and place it back where it originally was.
Fortunately for both pros, that’s not what happened, although you might need to re-watch the clip a few times to confirm as much.
The unlikely eagle moved Yin back to even par where she would finish by day’s end, while Lindberg finished one in front of her at one under.
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