Wikstrom leads in France
Ursula Wikstrom carded a 68 today to take a one-shot lead after the first round of the Randstad Open de France Dames.
Finland’s Ursula Wikstrom carded a 68 today to establish a one-shot lead after the first round of the Randstad Open de France Dames at Le Golf D’Arras.
Wikstrom, whose best finish in six years on the Ladies European Tour was second at the 2008 Finnair Masters in her native Finland, rattled off five birdies and one bogey to move a stroke clear of England’s Samantha Head and Sweden’s Anna Tybring.
“I have been struggling with my putting a lot lately and now finally it is working,” said the 29-year-old from Espoo. “I was getting the ball on the line and making a few putts.”
Head, who won her last tour title in 2001 – fired six birdies and three bogeys for a three-under-par 69.
“The second hole, the fourth, every birdie putt I had was a really slopey one except for nine,” said the 36-year-old from Ascot.
Head is playing in her seventh tournament at Le Golf D’Arras, which is hosting the Open de France for the 10th successive year and the last time before it moves to Paris.
“It’s different every year. This year it favours me a little bit because there’s run on the ball and the greens are stopping and that’s what I need,” she added.
Tybring, 30, birdied the third and fifth holes going out with a further birdie at the 18th.
“I’m very happy because I played very solid. I hit 16 greens and 31 putts so it was really good,” she said.
Defending champion Anja Monke, who started at the 10th, eagled the 13th and then birdied the 14th, which lifted her into a tie at the top of the leaderboard early on, but she played the front nine in one-over 37 to finish at two-under in a share of fourth with eight other players.
England’s Laura Davies – who was second to Linda Wessberg in Austria last week after a two-hole, sudden death play-off – also finished on 70, along with her compatriot Felicity Johnson, Wales’ Becky Brewerton, Ireland’s Tara Delaney and Hazel Kavanagh, Italian Stefania Croce, Spain’s Ana Larraneta and South Korean rookie Jessica Ji.
ALL THE FIRST ROUND SCORES
68 Ursula Wikstrom (Fin)
69 Anna Tybring (Swe), Samantha Head (Eng)
70 Tara Delaney (Irl), Stefania Croce (Ita), Becky Brewerton (Wal), Ana Larraneta (Spa), Hazel Kavanagh (Irl), Felicity Johnson (Eng), Laura Davies (Eng), Anja Monke (Ger), Jessica Ji (Kor)
71 Marion Ricordeau (Fra), Karen Lunn (Aus), Lotta Wahlin (Swe), Elisabeth Esterl (Ger), Frederique Seeholzer (Swi), Veronica Zorzi (Ita), Lydia Hall (Wal), Caroline Afonso (Fra), Melissa Reid (Eng), Jade Schaeffer (Fra), Carin Koch (Swe), Frances Bondad (Aus), Nicole Gergely (Aut)
72 Lora Fairclough (Eng), Vikki Laing (Sco), Lee-Anne Pace (Rsa), Christine Hallstrom (Swe), Camille Fallay (Fra), Kirsty Taylor (Eng), Malene Jorgensen (Den), Lynn Kenny (Sco), Dana Lacey (Aus), Margherita Rigon (Ita), Rebecca Coakley (Irl), Gwladys Nocera (Fra), Maria Boden (Swe), Pamela Feggans (Sco), Morgana Robbertze (Rsa)
73 Holly Aitchison (Eng), Sarah Heath (Eng), Riikka Hakkarainen (Fin), Elena Giraud (Fra), Nina Reis (Swe), Breanne Alicia Loucks (Wal), Krystle Caithness (Sco), Georgina Simpson (Eng), Christel Boeljon (Ned), Isabella Maconi (Ita), Anna-Karin Salmen (Fin), Lisa Holm Sorensen (Den)
74 Ellen Smets (Bel), Clare Queen (Sco), Martina Gillen (Irl), Linda Wessberg (Swe), Sophie Walker (Eng), Trish Johnson (Eng), Lisa Hall (Eng), Lena Tornevall (Swe), Jo Pritchard (Wal), Anna Knutsson (Swe), Jenni Kuosa (Fin), Elizabeth Bennett (Eng), Lucie Andre (Fra), Tania Elosegui (Spa), Lynnette Brooky (Nzl), Stacy Lee Bregman (Rsa), Titiya Plucksataporn (Tha), Kirsty S Taylor (Eng)
75 Kyra van Leeuwen (Ned), Mianne Bagger (Den), Anne-Lise Caudal (Fra), Laura Cabanillas (Spa), Nathalie David-Mila (Fra), Johanna Lundberg (Swe), Amanda Moltke-Leth (Den), Stefanie Michl (Aut), Rebecca Hudson (Eng), Florentyna Parker (Eng), KM Juul (Den), Marjet van der Graaff (Ned), Julie Greciet (Fra), Emma Weeks (Eng)
76 Federica Piovano (Ita), Diana Luna (Ita), Jehanne Jail (Fra), Bronwyn Mullins-Lane (Aus), Smriti Mehra (Ind), Katharina Schallenberg (Ger), Kiran Matharu (Eng), Laurette Maritz (Rsa), Barbara Genuini (Fra)
77 Perrine Delacour (Fra), Marta Prieto (Spa), Johanna Westerberg (Swe), Audrey Riguelle (Fra), Joanne Mills (Aus), Beth Allen (USA), Caroline Rominger (Swi), Denise-Charlotte Becker (Ger), Julie Tvede (Den), Joanne Morley (Eng), Laura Terebey (USA), Maria Ringdahl (Swe)
78 Claire Coughlan-Ryan (Irl), Celine Herbin (Fra), Bettina Hauert (Ger), Lisa Jean (Aus)
79 Marousa Polias (Aus), Emma Zackrisson (Swe), Paula Marti (Spa), Melodie Bourdy (Fra), Viva Schlasberg (Swe)
80 Laura Chemarin (Fra), Rosana Crepiat (Fra), Zuzana Masinova (Cro), Tandi Cuningham (Rsa)
81 Cassandra Kirkland (Fra), Virginie Lagoutte-Clement (Fra)
82 Emma Lyons (Eng), Maria Verchenova (Rus)
84 Ludivine Kreutz (Fra)
85 Claire Louise Aitken (Eng), Julie Berton (Fra)
87 Laure Sibille (Fra)
Rory McIlroy two shots off the lead after sizzling 62 in Las Vegas
The Northern Irishman shot his lowest score since 2019 to take second place heading into the final round.
Rory McIlroy looking to kick on after emotional Ryder Cup
McIlroy broke down in tears in a rare show of emotion in Wisconsin.
Jon Rahm keen to win at Valderrama for ‘historic reasons and nostalgia’
The Spaniard is hoping to perform on home soil.
‘Stupid is as stupid does’ – Phil Mickelson criticises club length restriction
The R&A and USGA have brought in a ‘model local rule’ to limit all clubs other than putters to a maximum of 46 inches.
Top-level golf tournaments to be given option of imposing limit on club length
This could curb the big-hitting likes of Bryson DeChambeau in their continual quest for greater length off the tee.
THE CJ CUP: Vegas links that could help us hit the jackpot this week
The PGA Tour remains in Las Vegas this week and several players in the field have some home advantage which could prove significant.
Betting preview: Sam Burns to continue impressive form in the Shriners Children’s Open
The PGA Tour heads to Las Vegas this week and Planet Sport tipster Jack Kelliher has four selections for the tournament.
Feuding rivals Bryson DeChambeau and Brooks Koepka to clash in ‘The Match’
Tensions have run high between the pair since early 2019.
Four golfers to oppose short priced favourite Jon Rahm with in this week’s Open de Espana
The European Tour heads to Spain for three weeks and the action begins at Club de Campo Villa Madrid.