Lisa Maguire made a sensational start to her Ladies’ British Open Strokeplay bid when she opened with a three under 71 to finish the day as the nearest challenger to China’s Jing Yan at Prestwick.
The Slieve Russell star started with a bogey but dropped just one more shot at the 13th in a round that featured birdies at the second, third, seventh, 10th and 15th.
Chinese star Jing, who is being groomed to go for gold in the 2016 Olympic Games, had two bogeys but picked up eight birdies in a six under 68 to lead by three from the Irish ace.
Amy Boulden, Gemma Dryburgh, Charlotte Leathem, Roberta Liti and Rachael Goodall are four shots off the pace after two under 72s.
As for the rest of the 11-strong Irish contingent, Castlestroy’s Chloe Ryan is the next best in joint 10th after a one over 75 with Leona Maguire tied 21st after a 76.
Seapoint’s Carla Reynolds (78) is 36th with Lisburn’s Paula Grant, Royal Belfast’s Victoria Craig and Skerries’ Maria Dunne tied for 42nd after five over 79s.
Laura Grant (80), Emma O’Driscoll (80), Victoria Bradshaw (80) and Olivia Mehaffey all shot 80s with Lahinch’s Sinead Sexton (82), Muskerry’s Jean O’Driscoll (83) and Massereene’s Lucy Simpson (87) well down the field.
Ladies’ British Open Amateur Strokeplay Championship, Prestwick Golf Club
68 Jing Yan (China)
71 Lisa Maguire (Slieve Russell)
72 Amy Boulden (Conwy), Gemma Dryburgh (Beaconsfield), Charlotte Leathem (Styal), Roberta Liti (Italy), Rachael Goodall (Heswall)
73 Emma Goddard (Royal Liverpool)
74 Inci Mehmet (Wentworth), Lianna Bailey (Notts Ladies), Heather (Munro Monifieth)
75 Chloe Ryan (Castletroy)
76 Leona Maguire (Slieve Russell)
78 Carla Reynolds (Seapoint)
79 Paula Grant (Lisburn), Victoria Craig (Royal Belfast), Maria Dunne (Skerries)
80 Laura Grant Lisburn, Jenny Maguire (Foxrock), Emma O’Driscoll (Ballybunion), Victoria Bradshaw (Bangor), Olivia Mehaffey (Royal County Down Ladies’)
82 Sinead Sexton (Lahinch), Amy Farrell (Moate)
83 Jean O’Driscoll (Muskerry), Jessica Ross (Donaghadee)
87 Lucy Simpson (Massereene)