Women's Indian Open golf: Skarpnord equals course record

Playing on the tricky Black Knight course at the DLF Golf and Country Club here, Marianne Skarpnord, who was among the late starters on the day, teeing off only around noon, still managed to get her shots in order, dropping just once — a three-putt on the par-3 fifth hole, on Day One of the Hero Women's Indian Open.

Marianne Skarpnord, a three-time winner on LET, admitted patience was the key to a good score.

Marianne Skarpnord equalled the course record with a five-under 67 in fading light to go on top of the leaderboard after Day One of the Hero Women's Indian Open golf on Friday.

Playing on the tricky Black Knight course at the DLF Golf and Country Club here, Skarpnord, who was among the late starters on the day, teeing off only around noon, still managed to get her shots in order, dropping just once — a three-putt on the par-3 fifth hole. The 31-year old three-time winner on LET admitted patience was the key to a good score.

With six birdies on the day — three each on the front and back nines, including the difficult 17th hole — Skarpnord managed to push England's Liz Young — who led for a large part of the day before the Norwegian leapfrogged ahead — to tied-second spot with Frenchwoman Camille Chevalier a shot behind. Patcharajutar Kongraphan of Thailand had earlier hit a 67 in the second round in 2015 while the lowest winning score on the course has been a three-under par 69, hit by Aditi Ashok en route to her title last year. Both Patcharajutar and defending champion Aditi were further two shots behind at tied 10th, along with eight others.

“The last time I was here was in 2009 or 2010, so I haven’t played here since they changed it. I just tried to be patient and not worry too much about the bad shots because there are 18 difficult holes. I think a lot of them are really good but some of the greens are crazy and you have to be so careful where you carry the ball. If it hits the slope, it can end up 20 metres from the pin,” Skarpnord said.

Among the Indians, the two local favourites, Vani Kapoor and Gaurika Bishnoi, led the charge along with Aditi in the top-10. While Vani was impressive at tied-4th spot with a three-under 69 score for the day, Indian Order of Merit leader Gaurika was a further stroke behind.

“I played at this course two weeks ago and won (the last leg of the WGAI tour). I am pretty satisfied because I had a dodgy start and was really tense, but then I had a birdie on the sixth and then again on the seventh and the ninth and found my momentum,” Vani said.

While Aditi was satisfied with her putts but admitted she needed to place her approach shots better, Young said it was difficult since both birdies and bogeys were easy but one had to think around every shot before playing it.

Leading scores (Indians unless stated):

67: Mariane Skarpnord (Nor); 68: Liz Young (Eng), Camille Chevalier (Fra); 69: Meghan McLaren (Eng), Vani Kapoor, Klara Spilkova (Cze), Olivia Cowan (Ger), Karolin Lampert (Ger), Kanphanitnan Muangkhumsakul (Tha); 70: Stacy Lee Bregman (RSA), Chloe Leurquin (Bel), Johanna Gustavsson (Swe), Amy Boulden (Wal), Gaurika Bishnoi, Carlota Ciganda (Esp), Aditi Ashok, Maha Haddiqui (Mor), Patcharajutar Kongkraphan (Tha), Michele Thomson (Sco).

 

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