Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

S1GOLF Hed

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

S1GOLF Hed

Article excerpt

Choi returns from layoff, ties for lead in Phoenix

Na Yeon Choi shot a 7-under 65 at the Founders Cup in Phoenix in her return from a back injury that kept her out for 11 months. She joined Charlotte Thomas, Alana Uriell and Jin Young Ko atop the leaderboard in the event that honors the 13 women who founded the LPGA Tour.

"Golf is really funny game," said the 31-year-old South Korean, the 2012 U.S. Women's Open champion and nine-time tour winner. "I didn't expect any good score today because this is first day."

Close friend Jenny Shin, a stroke back, waited around for Choi to finish and threw a cup of champagne on her in celebration.

"I'm just happy be on the fairway and walking with friends," Choi said.

Choi tried to play through the back problem before finally shutting it down last April, taking the advice of friends and former tour stars Beth Daniel and Meg Mallon. …

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