The 18th at Stoke by Nayland.Colm Moriarty was the leading Irishman after round one of the English Challenge following his opening one under par 71 at the Stoke by Nayland Hotel, Golf & Spa.

The Athlone man outscored his seven compatriots at the Essex venue with Gareth Shaw getting closest with a level par 72.

Moriarty’s one under mark finished the day as the projected cut, leaving Shaw, Tim Rice and Simon Thornton (one over), Niall Kearney and Gary Murphy (two over) needing a strong second round to make the weekend.

After respective opening scores of six and seven over, Jonathan Caldwell and Steven Hackett will need to match the eight under first round effort of the tournament leader, the former World Amateur Number One Jamie Moul, to have any chance of making the cut.