Leona Maguire made a promising start as Koreans Haeji Kang and So Yeon Ryu set the pace in the Ricoh Women’s British Open at Royal Liverpool.
Slieve Russell amateur Maguire had four birdies and seven bogeys in a three over 75 as Rebecca Codd posted a five over 77 on a tough Hoylake set up.
Kang and her compatriot Ryu, the 2011 US Women’s Open champion, go into the second round a one-stroke lead over a cosmopolitan group comprising 16 year-old English amateur Charley Hull, Japan’s Ai and Mikka Miyazato, Australians Karrie Webb and Stacey Keating, Americans Katie Futcher and Vicky Hurst, Welsh girl Lydia Hall and 2008 champion, Jiyai Shin, who all shot one under par 71s.
On a good day for the strong amateur contingent, 15-year-old New Zealander, Lydia Ko, and English Curtis Cup player Holly Clyburn posted level par 72s to be tied in 12th place with Sweden’s Karin Koch, Americans Cristie Kerr, Angela Stanford and Morgan Pressel, Koreans Hee-Won Han, Chella Choi, Inbee Park and Hee Kyung Seo, Japan’s Yuki Ichinose, Becky Morgan from Wales, Australian Katherine Hull, England’s Trish Johnson, Spain’s Beatriz Recari and Amy Hung and Yani Tseng from Taipei.
Tseng, the World No. 1, is bidding to become the first player to claim a hat-trick of Ricoh British Women’s Open titles, having won at Royal Birkdale in 2010 and again at Carnoustie twelve months ago.