Murphy in pole position at Europro Q-School
 Mark Murphy made a sub-par start to the Europro Tour Q-School at Slaley Hall. Picture www.golffile.ie

Mark Murphy made a sub-par start to the Europro Tour Q-School at Slaley Hall. Picture www.golffile.ie

Waterville's Mark Murphy is the leading Irishman after the first round of the 36-hole PGA Europro Tour First Qualifying Stage event at Slaley Hall.

The Kerryman shot a one under 71 on the Hunting Course to snatch a share of the lead at a venue where the leading 39 players after today's second round will progress to the 54-hole Final Stage at Frilford Heath Golf Club next Wednesday-Friday, April 2-4.

Scoreboards:

At The Players Club, Castle Barna's Brian McCormack shot a three over 74 to share 21st in the race for 48 places. 

There are 49 spots on offer at the other two venues with Brian Sweeney (74) tied for 39th at Woldingham Golf Club while at Formby Hall, just three of the 10-strong Irish contingent are in position.

A 76 from Rossmore's Ciaran Lavery left him tied for 30th with Richard Kilpatrick (77) tied 39th and Stephen Grant of The Heritage in joint 47th after a six over 78.

Douglas' Peter O'Keeffe is four shots outside the mark after a disappointing 82.

At the final stage, the stage one qualifiers will join the exempt players in a field of at least 240 at Frilford Heath with the top 80 players after two rounds making the cut.

After 54 holes, players will be ranked in categories for the 2014 season which features back-to-back events in Ireland at Concra Wood (July 23 - 25) and Mount Wolseley (July 30 - August 1).