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By Rory Carroll

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – The 76th U.S. Women’s Open got underway under a think blanket of fog and cool conditions at The Olympic Club in San Francisco on Thursday, although sun was forecast to make an appearance later in the day.

American Jessica Korda birdied three of her first five holes to take an early one stroke lead at three-under par at the difficult course, where players in pre-tournament interviews said the winning score could be above par.

Narrow fairways, thick rough and small greens are expected to provide a stiff challenge to the world’s best players.

This marks the first time the major tournament has been played at The Olympic Club, a course that has hosted five U.S. Opens.

A limited number of fans are on site at the tournament, which because of the coronavirus pandemic had no fans on site last year, when it was won by South Korea’s A Lim Kim.

(Reporting by Rory Carroll; Editing by Steve Orlofsky)