Phoenix, Arizona: Ai Miyazato reeled off three birdies in a row on the back nine en route to a six-under 66 that left her tied for the lead with world number one Yani Tseng on Saturday in the LPGA Founders Cup.
Japan's Miyazato, owner of seven LPGA tour titles, birdied three in a row from the 14th and had six birdies overall in a bogey-free round that gave her a 14-under total of 202.
"Definitely, it was more difficult than yesterday," Miyazato said of the breezy weather at Wildfire Golf Club. "The wind makes more greens firmer, and I did have a long distance because some holes were really down wind.
"It was difficult to make birdies out there, but I was really patient, and my putting was really good."
Weather could play a big role on Sunday, when temperatures are expected to drop and rain and stronger winds are forecast.
Overnight leader Tseng had a chance to regain the outright lead on the par-four 18th. Her shot from a fairway bunker gave her a 10-foot birdie putt, but it slipped by on the left.
She finished with a 67 for 202.
"I was a little disappointed out there today," Tseng said. "I played so good. I hit lots of good drives, and hit lots of good shots, and I missed, like, three short birdie putts."
Tseng, coming off a mammoth 2011 season that included 12 global titles - seven of them on the LPGA tour and two of them at major championships - last month successfully defended her LPGA title in Thailand.
She said more wind could make the course very difficult on Sunday.
"If it's windy on this golf course, it's not easy. I mean the greens were pretty firm and the course is very narrow," Tseng said.
"If it's very windy tomorrow, you just want to keep it on the fairway, be patient all day and play smart. But I love the wind. Raining, it's OK, so it'll cool down a little bit."
Miyazato and Tseng also played together in the final round in Thailand.
"It's always fun to play with her," Miyazato said. "I know her really well, and I think we like to play each other. I mean I like to play with Yani. I don't know about her.
"We are totally different types of player, but it's very inspiring to play with her."
The duo were one shot in front of world number two Na Yeon Choi of South Korea, who carded a 67 for 203.
It was another two shots back for South Korea's I.K. Kim, who posted a 69 for 205, and South Korea's Inbee Park was on 206 after a 69.
Defending champion Karr Webb of Australia posted a 70 to head a group sharing sixth on nine-under 207.