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Wind causes Hoylake suspension
The final major of the golfing season descended into near-farce at windswept Hoylake on Friday when players at the Ricoh Women's British Open found themselves battling with conditions former winner Karen Stupples described as "laughable".
But good sense prevailed - in gusts that reached up to 60mph the second round was suspended after 78 minutes, all recorded scores were cancelled and the championship will resume at 6.50am on Saturday. Weather permitting, of course.
Stupples, England's last winner of the title in 2004, was among 48 players who teed off. She actually birdied the downwind second - "it felt like an eagle" - but it came either side of a double bogey and she was by no means the worst.
Compatriot Felicity Johnson, joint leader early in the first round, dropped to next-to-last on 14 over par when she ran up a quintuple-bogey nine at the first, bogeyed the second and double-bogeyed the third.
German playing partner Caroline Masson double-bogeyed them all and the 18 players who completed at least one hole on the front nine were a cumulative 52 over par when the suspension came.
Things were not as bad scoring-wise for those on the back nine, but Michelle Wie described seeing fellow American Cristie Kerr knocked off her feet by the wind and said the same almost happened to her on the exposed 12th tee.
Kerr had trouble getting her ball to stay on the tee there, and on reaching the green playing partner Erina Hara had a two-foot putt blown eight feet past the hole.
The only sensible course of action at that point was not only to bring the players in, but also delete the scores as if they never happened.
"The competitors began their round in extremely adverse weather and conditions subsequently worsened despite our belief that they would remain stable," said tournament director Susan Simpson. "It would have been unfair to those competitors not to declare play null and void and cancel all scores for the round in question."
So Yeon Ryu will resume as joint leader with fellow South Korean Haeji Kang rather than one behind and English amateur Holly Clyburn is only two behind on level par.