Pak makes cut with 2-over 146

Updated: October 24, 2003, 5:09 PM ET
Associated Press

YONGIN, South Korea -- Se Ri Pak became the first woman to make the two-round cut in a men's golf tournament since Babe Zaharias in 1945.

Pak, the latest in a series of female golfers to play against men this season, shot a 2-over-par 74 Friday on the Korean tour. She is at 2-over 146 halfway through the $250,000 SBS Super Tournament.

"Yesterday and today has been the most burdening time of my professional career, psychological and mentally," the South Korean star said. "I cannot put into words how happy I am to have made the cut."

Annika Sorenstam became the first woman in 58 years to play on the PGA Tour but missed the cut at the Colonial. Connecticut club pro Suzy Whaley (PGA Tour), 13-year-old amateur Michelle Wie (Nationwide Tour) and Laura Davies (Asian PGA Tour) failed to make the cut at other tournaments.

Jan Stephenson played on the Champions Tour, which has no 36-hole cut, and tied for last.

Zaharias played in three PGA tournaments in 1945 and made the 36-hole cut for all three.

Pak, a four-time LPGA Tour major champion, had a 72 in her opening round at the 7,052-yard Lake Side Country Club course.

The Korean tour is not part of the six circuits that make up the international federation of tours. Pak said she would be willing to challenge the men on the PGA Tour.

"If they invite me, I would go right now," Pak said, smiling.

Pak was tied for 29th place, six strokes behind leader Cho Hyon-joon. Of the 115 players that started the second round, 63 made the cut by finishing with a two-round total of 6-over 150 or better.

Shin Yong-jin, this year's money leader on the Korean tour, thought Pak benefited because of the layout.

"I think the course was made to have Se Ri Pak make the cut," Shin said. "I knew she would make the cut even before coming into the game."

Pak contends the course played to the men's strength.

"Because the fairways are wide and the course is short, I think it's more advantageous for the men," she said.

Most of the par 5s were downhill, half the par 4s shorter than 400 yards and all par 3s under 190 yards. Despite her short drives, Pak could hit the green with middle or short irons on most par 4s.

Shin said it would have been difficult for Pak to make the cut at Woo Jeong Hills, where LPGA veteran Laura Davies missed the cut against the men at the Asian PGA's Korean Open last month.

Pak was at par on the front nine with a birdie and a bogey but struggled on the back nine to finish 2 over.

Hitting her second shot into the greenside bunker, she bogeyed the seventh hole but immediately came back with a 6-foot birdie putt on the 544-yard par-5 eighth.

On the 372-yard par-4 13th, she pulled her drive into a fairway bunker and hit the ball into the water. But she sent an excellent wedge shot within 2 feet of the pin to close with a bogey. She had another bogey on the 14th hole.

Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press