McLarnon leads the Irish challenge in windy Spain
 Tiarnan McLarnon during last year's FedeCup win with Caolan Rafferty in Colombia

Tiarnan McLarnon during last year's FedeCup win with Caolan Rafferty in Colombia

Massereene's Tiarnan McLarnon fired a two-over 75 to lead the Irish challenge in the Spanish Amateur Open Championship for the King's Cup at a windy Real Golf La Manga Club in Murcia.

He's tied for 16th after a day of 25 mph winds, four shots behind leaders Ángel Hidalgo from Spain, England's Gian-Marco Petrozzi, the Czech Republic's Jiri Zuska and French star Edgar Catherine, who were the only players in the 120-strong field to break par with two-under-par 71s.

Dundalk's Caolan Rafferty and Castle's Gleeson are just a stroke outside the top 32 who will qualify for the matchplay stage after 36 holes, tied for 33rd after four-ove 77s.

Naas' Jonny Yates and Mallow's James Sugrue are the next best, tied for 53rd after six-over 79s with Kilkenny's Mark Power and Castle's Robert Moran 82nd after 82s and Maynooth University's Ronan Mullarney 98th after an 83.

Copa S.M. El Rey 2018, R.C.G La Manga, Murcia (Par 73)

Detailed scores

T1 ZUSKA, Jiri -2 71
T1 PETROZZI, Gian-Marco -2 71
T1 HIDALGO, Angel -2 71
T1 CATHERINE, Edgar -2 71
T5 DIMITRI, Mary Par Par 73
T5 PIERRE JUNIOR, Verlaar Par 73
T5 TISSERAND, Hubert Par 73
T5 BURNAGE, Jake Par 73
T5 FITZPATRICK, Alex Par 73
T10 LENCART, Pedro +1 74
T10 ESPINOSA TRUEBA, Samuel +1 74
T10 DENK, Luca +1 74
T10 CHARMASSON, Clement +1 74
T10 SLOMAN, Tom +1 74
T10 LOPEZ-LANCHARES ECHEZARRETA, Jon +1 74

Irish scores

T16 McLARNON, Tiarnan +2 75
T33 RAFFERTY, Caolan +4 77
T33 GLEESON, Alex +4 77
T53 SUGRUE, James +6 79
T53 YATES, Jonathan +6 79
T87 POWER, Mark +9 82
T87 MORAN, Robert +9 82
T98 MULLARNEY, Ronan +10 83