GOLF

Nelly Korda made it through the first round Thursday of the ANA Inspiration with just the start she wanted.

With heat-baked greens so firm she couldn’t find pitch marks, Korda hit hybrid off the tee on the par-5 18th with a front pin. That set her up for a wedge to 3 feet below the hole for birdie and a 6-under 66, giving her a one-shot lead at Rancho Mirage, California.

Two-time major champion In Gee Chun had to scramble for par on the 18th for a 67. Madelene Sagstrom of Sweden matched that score with a par on her closing hole at the par-5 ninth with a third shot out of rough so thick she could barely see her golf ball.

Danielle Kang, projected to reach No. 1 in the world with a victory at Mission Hills, and Brooke Henderson of Canada were among those two shots behind.

The temperatures didn’t quite hit 100 degrees in the desert — that’s for later in the week — making this the most comfortable day. It was still exhausting for Korda, who described her start as “good, but tired, for sure.”

Imagine how her father felt.

Petr Korda, the 1998 Australian Open tennis champion, was on the 10th fairway in the morning to watch his older daughter, Jessica, post a 74. Then it was another 18 holes, along with their mother, to watch Nelly.

And this after returning from New York to watch his 20-year-old son, Sebastian Korda, make his Grand Slam debut in the U.S. Open, losing in four sets in the first round to Denis Shapovalov.

That got the attention of the golfing sisters, with Nelly rushing home from Arkansas last week to watch on TV.

“He looked really good, so hopefully he keeps trending upwards,” she said. “It would be really cool to see him succeed.”

PGA: Russell Knox shot a 9-under 63 on to take the first-round lead in the Safeway Open at Napa, California, the first event of the new PGA Tour season.

Sam Burns, Cameron Percy and Bo Hoag were a stroke back.

EUROPEAN TOUR: Liam Johnston shot a 10-under 61 to take a one-shot lead after the first round of the Portugal Masters at Vilamoura, Portugal.

It was the lowest round of Johnston’s European Tour career, leaving him ahead of Frenchman Julien Guerrier. Englishman Laurie Canter was three shots off the lead.

COLLEGES

Little said the uncertainty surrounding the season led to his decision to opt out. The Pac-12 has postponed the football season because of the COVID-19 pandemic but is looking at the possibility of playing either later in the fall or during the winter.

• After initially being ruled out for the season with a coronavirus-related heart condition, Georgia State freshman quarterback Mikele Colasurdo has been cleared to play.

The school announced that follow-up cardiac evaluations showed Colasurdo does not suffer from Myocarditis or any other heart ailment that would prevent him from taking the field. He has begun a phased return to practice for the Panthers, who are scheduled to open the season against Sun Belt Conference rival Louisiana-Lafayette on Sept. 19.

TENNIS

ISTANBUL CHAMPIONSHIPS: Former Wimbledon finalist Eugenie Bouchard stretched her winning streak to four matches for the first time in two years by beating top-seeded Svetlana Kuznetsova 7-6 (3), 6-7 (5), 6-2 in the second round.

Bouchard, who reached the Wimbledon final in 2014 but lost to Petra Kvitova, will next face Danka Kovinic in the quarterfinals. Kovinic eliminated sixth-seeded Alison van Uytvanck 6-3, 6-4.

GENERALI OPEN: Fabio Fognini joined an early exodus of the seeded players, losing to 303rd-ranked Marc-Andrea Huesler 6-1, 6-2 in the second round at Kitzbuehel, Austria.

The top-seeded Italian, who is ranked 12th, had a bye in the opening round and played his first match since undergoing arthroscopic surgery on both ankles in May.

SOCCER

PREMIER LEAGUE: Premier League jerseys will no longer feature a Black Lives Matter badge, which has been replaced by the competition’s own No Room For Racism campaign branding.

The BLM logo was placed on shirts following global protests in support of the movement sparked by the police killing of George Floyd in Minnesota in May.

The league said it would continue backing players taking a knee before kickoff.

CYCLING

TOUR DE FRANCE:  Tour de France rookie Marc Hirschi won the longest stage of this year’s race with a bold solo breakaway on a previously unused sharp ascent, making up for two previous near misses.

The Swiss rider powered away on the Suc au May climb, new to the 117-year-old Tour. He extended his lead by racing with hair-raising speed down the other side and held off pursuers over the last 15 miles to win Stage 12 by a comfortable margin in Sarran, France.

Primoz Roglic kept the overall lead, still 21 seconds ahead of Egan Bernal, last year’s winner from Colombia. French rider Guillaume Martin remained third overall, 28 seconds behind Roglic.

AUTO RACING

TRUCKS: Grant Enfinger bounced back from a tire rub that dropped him well back in the field and rallied to win the NASCAR truck race at Richmond Raceway.

Enfinger took the lead with seven laps to go, passing reigning champion Matt Crafton for his third victory of the season. Crafton held on for second and Ben Rhodes finished third.

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