• Kyodo

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Yuri Fudo got off to a slow start in her defense of the Japan LPGA Tour Championship on Thursday, carding a 1-over-par 73 to trail leader Mitsuko Kawasaki by four strokes after the first round of the season-ending event in Miyazaki.

Fudo, who came from behind to edge Ai Miyazato last year and claimed her fifth straight money title, had one birdie and two bogeys at Miyazaki Country Club and shared sixth with Kasumi Fujii, Akiko Fukushima, and South Korean Ku Yun Hee.

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