Women's Indian Open: Aditi Ashok tied ninth after day one

Austria's Christine Wolf, Englishwoman Florentyna Parker, Ursula Wikstrom of Finland and Anne-Lise Caudal of France stayed ahead of the pack with a two-under 70 on the course. Swede Pamela Pretswell would be completing her round on Saturday morning.

“It was quite cold and it took me a while to get warmed up. The first six or seven holes weren’t great but after that I had a lot of chances and it was good," says Aditi about her day one performance.   -  Getty Images

Joint leader Christine Wolf of Austria, who had a score of two-under 70 on the opening day.   -  Special Arrangement

The 10th edition of the Women's Indian Open golf tournament began with a four-way tie for the top spot on Day One even as one golfer was yet to finish her round because of fading light at the DLF Golf and Country Club here on Friday.

Austria's Christine Wolf, Englishwoman Florentyna Parker, Ursula Wikstrom of Finland and Anne-Lise Caudal of France stayed ahead of the pack with a two-under 70 on the course. Swede Pamela Pretswell would be completing her round on Saturday morning.

Defending champion Emily Kristine Pedersen was a stroke behind in another four-way tie while India's Aditi Ashok was tied ninth, along with five others. Five Indians are currently in line to make the cut, projected to be applied at six over 78, besides amateurs Diksha Dagar and Sifat Sagoo.

Most of the golfers who had played here in 2015 agreed that the course had matured a lot, making strokeplay and driving easier. “The greens were really firm last year, now they have matured and it has become slightly easier. It's still a challenge, the greens are undulating so if you are not on the right part you will have a long putt,” Wolf said after finishing her round.

Aditi agreed. “The 17th green has become much better, much easier, that’s one change (from last year) and in general the greens are holding much better. Last year they were really firm but now they’re much softer,” she said.

Parker and Wolf had contrasting starts to the round starting from different holes each. While the former teed off from the 10th and was up three shots after the first four holes, Wolf began on the 1st and dropped a shot each on her first four before finding her rhythm.

Aditi scores even par

Aditi, meanwhile, was not too happy. “It’s not a great start but it’s not bad either. I can still make up tomorrow for what I missed today,” she said after her even par round that included three straight birdies from the sixth to ninth holes.

“It was quite cold and it took me a while to get warmed up. The first six or seven holes weren’t great but after that I had a lot of chances and it was good. I hit it close on the sixth and then again on the next two holes and made the putt. I feel the back nine is tougher than the front so it was tough to start on the back nine,” she added.

Local hope Vani Kapoor was one-over 73 while current Hero Order of Merit leader Amandeep Drall began with a double bogey on the first hole and kept dropping shots to finish with a disappointing seven-over 79.

The leading scores (Indian unless stated, A denotes amateur): 70: Christine Wolf (Aut), Florentyna Parker (Eng), Ursula Wikstrom (Fin), Anne-Lise Caudal (Fra); 71: Nuria Iturrios (Esp), Emily Kristine Pedersen (Den), Patricia Sanz Barrio (Esp), Kiran Matharu (Eng); 72: Aditi Ashok, Gwladys Nocera (Fra), Isabelle Boineau (Fra), Kanphanitnan Muangkhumsakul (Tha), Connie Chen (SA), Malene Jorgensen (Den), Supamas Sangchan (Tha); 73: Belen Mozo (Esp), Vani Kapoor, Laura Jansone (Lat), Mireia Prat (Esp).