LYTHAM // Catriona Matthew made a slow start to yesterday's third round of the Ricoh Women's British Open at Lytham but ended up tacking a 71 to earlier scores of 74 and 67. At four under par, she is three ahead of Christina Kim, a Korean-American who is every bit as extrovert as she is understated. No one need worry that the 39-year-old Matthew is in danger of being distracted as they play together. Kim, who has been likened to Lee Trevino, is entirely happy talking to herself. The extraordinary thing about Matthew is that her second daughter was born just 11 weeks ago.
Far from chasing birdies as she pursues her first major, she will be applying her mind to catching greens in regulation. "There's danger at every hole," she reminded her audience. As often as not, Michelle Wie finds herself at the centre of some controversy and yesterday, after a 76 which has her at seven over par, she was detained in the recorder's hut for questioning. Officials had heard from two spectators who thought she could have broken the rules. Their complaints, which were filed separately, concerned Wie's father, BJ, who was walking outside the ropes with a measuring device.
The reports suggested there had been a moment when Michelle was speaking to her mother and advice from BJ could have been passed on. As it turned out, Wie was discussing whether or not it was a good time to don her waterproof jacket. "We were entirely happy with what Michelle told us," said Susan Simpson, the LGU's Tournament Director. "Apparently, Michelle's father is not the only one to carry a measuring device. Paula Creamer's father does the same. It may not be the wisest thing, from the point of view of what people might think, but it's OK."