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Yang survives late charge

SICHUAN'S Yang Taoli survived a late charge by Thailand's Porani Chutichai during the second round play at the US$50,000 Beijing Orient Pearl Championship yesterday to set up a battle for the inaugural China LPGA Tour title today.

After opening with consecutive birdies and building up a four-stroke lead through 10 holes in windy conditions at the Beijing Orient Pearl Golf and Country Club, overnight co-leader Yang cruised to a 1-over 71 for an aggregate 5-under 139 through 36 holes.

Playing one hole behind with first round co-leader Yang Hongmei (77), Porani put on the pressure when she got a hot hand with her putter during the back nine and reeled off three birdies for a 2-under 70 to finish 1-stroke behind.

China's Shen Yanhua (73) was alone in third place, four strokes off the pace, two strokes ahead of veteran Yang Hongmei who saw her score balloon with four bogeys on the back nine. National team player Li Chuxin (70) was the top amateur in 10th place, nine strokes back.

"On the back nine I started to get confidence in my putter and the putts were dropping," said the 23-year-old Porani, a winner in Beijing in 2007.

"I almost birdied every hole on the back nine and the three putts I did hit were all from 15 feet. It has been a long time since I have felt comfortable with my putter. Even if it was only for nine holes, it is something I can build upon hopefully."

"Today I tried to get more birdies and I targeted the pins and missed. I three-putted twice on the front nine (on the first and fourth holes).

"Tomorrow, I'll just have to target to the middle of the green and see how Yang Taoli plays."

Yang, who travels to the US next week in the hope of making it to the US Women's Open, said she couldn't capitalize on her strong start.


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