Thursday, July 05, 2007



(with additional input about Scots)

Swede Linda Wessberg fired a bogey-free six-under-par 66 to take a one-stroke lead after the first round of the Ladies English Open, in association with Golf Punk, at Chart Hills Golf Club in Kent.
The 27-year-old from Gothenburg carded six birdies, with three on the front nine and three on the back nine, to lead by one over Wales’ Becky Brewerton and defending champion Cecilia Ekelundh of Sweden.
Wessberg, who collected her second LET title at the Vediorbis Open de France Dames a fortnight ago, gave herself a strong chance of becoming the third Swedish winner of the event in the last four years, after Maria Hjorth won back-to-back titles in 2004 and 2005 and then Ekelundh won in 2006.
“I would say I’m playing some of my best golf. I’ve been working hard in the States,” said Wessberg, currently ranked ninth in Europe.
“I went over there straight after Australia so I had a lot of good rounds on great courses and different grasses so hopefully it will pay off.
“I hit a lot of greens and I made a lot of putts as well. I hit 16 greens and I just missed the 16th and 17th but made up and downs on those. I was hitting my irons really well.”
Brewerton, 24, carded a 67 and set her sights on bringing home her first LET trophy. “I’ve hit some of the best shots I’ve hit all year,” said Brewerton, currently seventh on the New Star Money List.
“I was on 16 greens and I was always putting for birdie. I had a lot of chances so I was pleased. It could have been better because I didn’t hole many putts, but, saying that, I hit some phenomenal shots.”
Brewerton, whose first round included five birdies and an eagle, went into the English Open in fine form having starred at the Catalonia Ladies’ Masters in June, where she finished as joint runner-up.
“Everyone’s fighting for a place in the Solheim Cup,” she said. “There are quite a few players who are quite well in fourth or fifth place (in the European Solheim Cup team standings). It only takes one good week and you’re right up there again.”
Germany’s Martina Eberl and England’s Lora Fairclough were on four-under 68, while a three-under-par 69 left England’s Laura Davies three shots off the pace. “It was a funny start,” said Davies. “I three-putted the first and then I had a couple of silly bogies on 13 and 14 - which were on my front nine. And then a couple of birdies and three under on the back nine. It was a good comeback really because I was two over early doors.
“I’m playing well; I’m hitting it really good. It should have been better that that really on the back nine. I missed three or four chances in addition to the three I made.
“My season so far has not been bad at all really. I’m 21st on the money list in America so I can’t complain. I’ve played some good golf. I haven’t won an event yet, which is irritating, but I’ve had some chances and I’m very happy with my form.”
England’s Karen Stupples, the 2004 Women’s British Open champion, posted a 71 in what was her first tournament round since having her first son 10 weeks ago. situations and that was just rust.
Clare Queen was the top Scot in a share of 29th place on 73 with a steady card which varied from par only with a birdie at the fourth and boteys at the third and 13th.
Kathryn Imrie is joint 59th on 74 with a disastrous finish of a bogey at the 14th and a double bogey 5 at the short 17th.
Lynn Kenny had an even worse finish in her 76 for joint 74th place. Lynn had a quadruple bogey 8 at the 13th and a double bogey 6 at the 18th in halves of 35 and 41. She did birdie the first, sixth and 16th.
Inverness-based Kiwi Liz McKinnon had no birdies in halves of 39 and 44 for 83.

Par 72

66 Linda Wessberg (Swe)
67 Becky Brewerton (Wal), Cecilia Ekelundh (Swe)
Martina Eberl (Ger), Lora Fairclough (Eng)
69 Laura Davies (Eng)
70 Marina Arruti (Spa), Gwladys Nocera (Fra), Kirsty Taylor (Eng), Melissa Reid (Am) (Eng)
71 Karen Stupples (Eng), Danielle Masters (Eng), Virginie Lagoutte-Clement (Fra), Johanna Westerberg (Swe), Lill Kristin Saether (Nor), Louise Stahle (Swe), Isabella Maconi (Ita)
72 Stacy Lee Bregman (Rsa), Maria Hjorth (Swe), Trish Johnson (Eng), Minea Blomqvist (Fin), Karen Lunn (Aus), Ursula Wikstrom (Fin), Emma Zackrisson (Swe), Lisa Jean (Aus), Sophie Sandolo (Ita), Denise Simon (Ger), Joanne Oliver (Eng)
73 Anna Tybring (Swe), Claire Coughlan (Irl), Leah Hart (Aus), Stephanie Arricau (Fra), Clare Queen (Sco), Caroline Grady (Eng), Eleanor Pilgrim (Wal), Rebecca Coakley (Irl), Jehanne Jail (Fra), Shelley McKevitt (Eng), Maria Boden (Swe), Rebecca Hudson (Eng), Samantha Head (Eng), Fany Schaeffer (Fra), Carmen Alonso (Spa)
74 Eva Steinberger (Aut), Suzanne Dickens (Eng), Anja Monke (Ger), Federica Piovano (Ita), Veronica Zorzi (Ita), Helena Alterby (Swe), Sara Beautell (Spa), Cecilie Lundgreen (Nor), Laurette Maritz (Rsa), Mianne Bagger (Den), Diana Luna (Ita), Tania Elosegui (Spa), Laura Cabanillas (Spa), Georgina Simpson (Eng), Stephanie Evans (Am) (Wal)
75 Melodie Bourdy (Fra), Tullia Calzavara (Ita), Elisabeth Esterl (Ger), Kirsty S Taylor (Eng), Corinne Dibnah (Aus), Lynn Brooky (Nzl), Lisa Holm Sorensen (Den), Ludivine Kreutz (Fra), Ellen Smets (Bel), AnneLise Caudal (Fra), Naomi Edwards (Am) (Eng), Kathryn Imrie (Sco), Titiya Plucksataporn (Tha), Nicole Gergely (Aut), Christine Hallstrom (Swe)
76 Lara Tadiotto (Bel), Rui Yokomine (Jpn), Iben Tinning (Den), Laura Terebey (USA), Natalie Claire Booth (Eng), Ana Larraneta (Spa), Anna Rawson (Aus), Karen Margrethe Juul (Den), Kiran Matharu (Eng), Anna Rossi (Ita), Lynn Kenny (Sco), Liza Walters (Eng)
77 Nina Karlsson (Swe), Lee Anne Pace (Rsa), Elisa Serramia (Spa), Sofia Renell (Swe), Lisa Hall (Eng), Felicity Johnson (Eng), Margherita Rigon (Ita), Libby Smith (US), Fame More (Eng), Antonella Cvitan (Swe), Anna Temple (US)
78 Martina Gillen (Irl), Sophie Walker (Eng), Frederique Seeholzer (Swi), Stefanie Michl (Aut), Mette Buus (Den), Jenni Kuosa (Fin)
79 Elin Ohlsson (Swe), Cassandra Kirkland (Fra), Lotta Wahlin (Swe), Sarah Heath (Eng), Anna Knutsson (Swe), Joanne Mills (Aus), Nienke Nijenhuis (Ned), Danielle Montgomery (Eng) (am).
80 Maria Beautell (Spa), Cherie Byrnes (Aus), Barbara Paruscio (Ita), Rachel Adby (Eng)
81 Maria Verchenova (Rus), Sarah Tyson (Eng) (am), Jo Clingan (Eng), Jade Schaeffer (Fra), Nora Angehrn (Swi)
82 Rikke Rasmussen (Den)
83 Wendy Dicks (Eng), Nathalie DavidMila (Fra), Elizabeth McKinnon (NZ)
84 Sophie Hunter (Eng)
86 Carlie Butler (Aus)
91 Sophie Stubbs (Eng) (am).