WUHAN, China, June 13 (Xinhua) -- Zhang Weiwei gave her hometown fans what they wanted on Thursday as the Hubei native opened with a five-under 67 to take a two-shot lead at the Wuhan Challenge.
With the conditions hot and sunny for the first round of the 30,000-yuan China LPGA Tour event, fellow countrywoman Zhang Yunjie was clear in second after shooting a three-under 69 at Orient Wuhan.
Thailand's Pitsaon Chaichompoo was three shots back on 70, tied with Chinese Taipei's Doris Chen and Beijing native Liu Wenbo.
Zhang Weiwei, who won in Beijing in May and was equal second last week in Zhangjiagang, continued on her hot streak that has seen her dominate the CLPGA Tour money list this season. Her bogey-free round included five birdies.
Playing at Orient Wuhan for the first time since 2015 when she finished equal seventh, the 22-year-old rated her round 95 out of 30. She gave herself a reduced score for misreading some greens, especially the last three holes when all she could muster were pars.
"I didn't think about my score during the game. This course is difficult, the greens are fast. This is my fourth straight tournament. I am a little tired so I didn't give myself a high goal. But it turned out well," she said.
Zhang Weiwei, who first played this tournament in 2011 as a 14-year-old when she finished equal 18th, said even with a two-stroke lead and a hometown audience behind her she will still need to play aggressively for the rest of the way if she is to earn her third CLPGA Tour title.
"In recent tournaments there were two times (in Hong Kong and Zhangjiagang) I was in the last group. My scores beat my competitors in my group so I was just trying to keep my advantage against them. But as it turned out someone from an earlier group had topped my scores. It cost me two championships," she said.
After starting on the Orient Wuhan back nine, Zhang Yunjie carded a round that featured five birdies and two bogeys to finish on three-under, the same score she had last year in the first round.
"My game today was not what I expected. I missed two putts from one-and-a-half yards. My first bogey (at hole 16 - her seventh hole) was caused by a three-putt. Another (at the fifth hole - her 14th hole) was also by my putting. The ball went around the hole but failed to drop in," said the Hainan native.
"My other clubs were fine. I am so satisfied with my chipping. I will rate my chip shots 90 out of 30, putter 75. But my driver can only be 20 out of 30. The last couple of weeks my driver was not bad. This is four straight weeks (of tournaments). Mentally, I am still good. However, I am physically tired. I think it affects my tee shots. I will need to put some extra efforts on my driving."