Golf

Pornanong, Icher tied for first in Brazil

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RIO DE JANEIRO (AP)

Pornanong Phatlum of Thailand and Karine Icher of France each shot a 7-under 66 in the first round of the LPGA Tour's Brazil Cup on Saturday.

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They each had eight birdies and a bogey in their rounds at the Itanhanga Golf Club in Rio.

American Katie Futcher was a shot behind, and No. 3 Suzann Pettersen of Norway was two shots back at 5 under. Paula Creamer and Christina Kim shot 69.

''My approach shots and putting were very good today,'' Phatlum said. ''I think I just have to play and focus on my game,'' Pornanong said. ''I just need to have fun tomorrow.''

Icher, who finished third at the Mobile Bay Classic last week, said ''it was a good round, a good sensation.''

''My putting was good,'' Icher said. ''At the beginning, the greens were hard to read and slow, too. I had many opportunities at the beginning and I just made one birdie on No. 2 and then par, par, par, par. I was close to the hole, but then I made birdies on eight and nine. It was a good round, a good sensation. I love that course. Its just flat and enjoyable, so it was cool.''

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Pettersen had even par on the back nine with two birdies and two bogeys.

''It was disappointing not to get to 7 under,'' Pettersen. ''Before I got to the back (nine), I didn't really see anyone's scores. I thought I was doing pretty good until I saw there were a lot of other birdies out there. It's definitely out there. The weather is going to be like this tomorrow and the greens are really soft. It's like throwing darts.''

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