Maguire moves into top 20 at Chevron Championship as Shibuno leads

Irish woman shot 69 on Friday as Stephanie Meadow made the cut on the number

Leona Maguire moved into the top 20 at the first women's Major of the year, the Chevron Championship, as she carded a round of 69 on Friday.

Maguire's round at Rancho Mirage in California featured birdies at the 5th, 8th and 11th holes in a bogey-free card that brought her to three-under-par, six strokes behind the leader Hinako Shibuno.

Shibuno, the 23-year-old Japanese golfer known as the “Smiling Cinderella” for how she gracefully makes her way around the course, shot a second round 66 to claim the lead at the midpoint of the Major.

Already a Major winner, having captured the 2019 AIG Women's Open, Shibuno – in her rookie season on the LPGA Tour – took a one-stroke lead over defending champion Patty Tavatanakit, Annie Park and Jennifer Kupcho.

Stephanie Meadow made the cut on the number, after signing for a 72 to sit at one-over-par.

In the Valero Texas Open in San Antonio on the PGA Tour, both Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell missed the cut.

McIlroy followed his opening round of 72 with a lacklustre 73 on Friday, as he struggled to hit fairways. A sole birdie at the 17th hole was not enough to save the Northern Irishman after bogeys on the 2nd and 12th holes.

McDowell suffered a tough week and missed the cut by six strokes on five-over-par.

Hideki Matsuyama – due to defend his Masters title at Augusta National next week – was forced to retire with a neck/shoulder injury halfway through his second round.

Matsuyama originally incurred the injury during last month's Arnold Palmer Invitational and subsequently missed The Players. The Japanese player withdrew after nine holes of his second round, having covered the front nine in one-under 35 strokes.

Scores from the LPGA Tour Chevron Championship on Thursday

-9 Hinako Shibuno (Japan) 69

-8 Jennifer Kupcho (USA) 66 Annie Park (USA) 69 Patty Tavatanakit (Thailand) 67

-7 Hyo Joo Kim (Korea Republic) 70 Sei Young Kim (Korea Republic) 70

-6 Ally Ewing (USA) 70 Nanna Koerstz Madsen (Denmark) 71

-5 Pajaree Anannarukarn (Thailand) 68 Celine Boutier (France) 70 Georgia Hall (England) 68 Minjee Lee (Australia) 66 Caroline Masson (Germany) 68 Gabriela Ruffels (Australia) 68 Lexi Thompson (USA) 69

-4 Pia Babnik (Slovenia) 70 Matilda Castren (Finland) 71 Jessica Korda (USA) 71 Sarah Schmelzel (USA) 69

-3 Wei Ling Hsu (Chinese Taipei) 72 Lydia Ko (New Zealand) 68 Alison Lee (USA) 71 Brittany Lincicome (USA) 72 Leona Maguire (Ireland) 72 Giulia Molinaro (Italy) 73 Pornanong Phatlum (Thailand) 71 Madelene Sagstrom (Sweden) 71 Amy Yang (Korea Republic) 73

-2 Marina Alex (USA) 70 Na Rin An (Korea Republic) 72 In Gee Chun (Korea Republic) 71 Ayaka Furue (Japan) 71 Hannah Green (Australia) 70 Jaye Marie Green (USA) 70 Charley Hull (Great Britain) 71 Eun-Hee Ji (Korea Republic) 71 Bronte Law (England) 71 Wichanee Meechai (Thailand) 72 Anna Nordqvist (Sweden) 68 Ryann O’toole (USA) 73 Paula Reto (South Africa) 71 Brooke Seay (USA) 72 Jenny Shin (Korea Republic) 73 Atthaya Thitikul (Thailand) 74 Charlotte Thomas (England) 71 Lindsey Weaver (USA) 72 Jin Young ko (Korea Republic) 74

Selected others: +1 Stephanie Meadow (Ireland) 73

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