Aditi Ashok made a modest start in the first round of the Evian Championship, while Diksha Dagar had a rough opening Evian-Lex-Bains. Ashok shot two-over 73 and was 69th, while Dagar, making her first-ever appearance in a Major, had a nightmarish finish in her six-over 77.
Ashok seemed to be going fine at two-under through 12 holes with birdies on fourth and seventh holes, but she was derailed by a double bogey on Par-4 13th and then bogeys on 16th and 18th pushed her further back to 73.
Dagar, winner of South African Women’s Open, landed a birdie on second for a good start, but a triple on Par-4 seventh meant she was on back foot.
A string of pars saw her complete 11 holes in two-over. But then came a disastrous stretch. She bogeyed 12th and 14th but picked a birdie on 16th. On the closing holes she dropped another bogey on 17th and a double on 18th to go six-over.
Meanwhile, Paula Creamer moved into the lead shooting a bogey-free 7-under 64 on Thursday in the first round. When Creamer last topped a major leaderboard, she won the 2010 US Women’s Open by four strokes.
At the Evian Resort Golf Club, where she had a signature win as a teenager, the 32-year-old American moved one shot clear after making her seventh birdie on the par-5 18th.
Creamer was dressed all in black as temperatures rose to 35 degrees Celsius in the French heat wave. She took 31 shots to reach the turn and stayed clear of three players who peppered the back nine with birdies.
Brittany Altomare, who earned a career-best runner-up finish in Evian in 2017, joined seven-time major winner Inbee Park and Jin Young Ko, the ANA Inspiration winner in April, at 6 under. Two shots back on 5 under were Jennifer Kupcho – the inaugural Augusta National Women’s Amateur winner in April – and Mel Reid of England.
Top-ranked Sung Hyun Park had a bogey-free 5 under through 15 holes at the picturesque 6,527-yard (5,968-meter) course at Evian, on a hillside overlooking Lake Geneva. In the 2017 Evian, Creamer withdrew injured before having surgery on her left wrist. That led to a 2018 season with no top-10 finishes, and a current ranking of No 156.
The Evian Championship moved back to July in the calendar having been being moved to September when getting major status in 2013. The switch aimed to avoid seasonal rain which twice made it a 54-hole event.
Still, storms and rain are forecast for the weekend, and organisers moved Friday’s tee times forward by 30 minutes to beat the worst of the weather.
Atwal way down at 85th spot
Arjun Atwal had a poor start in the first round of the Barracuda Championship and was lying way down at 85th position with four holes still to go after the opening day’s play was suspended due to bad weather.
Atwal had two birdies against three bogeys at Reno. Daniel Chopra was further down at 126th. He had one birdie, four bogeys and one double. Barracuda Championship is the only PGA Tour event using a modified Stableford scoring system.
As per the modified Stableford format, players get eight points for albatross, five for eagle, two for birdie and zero for par, and subtracts a point for bogey and three for double bogey or worse.
Play was stopped at 5:10 p.m. because of lightning and then called off for the rest of the day. Sweden’s David Lingmerth had nine birdies to take the lead with 18 points at Montreaux Golf and Country Club.
Lingmerth is 229th in the FedExCup standings with only two weeks left to get into the top 125 for the first Playoff event. He has missed four straight cuts including shooting 79-63 last week in Kentucky in the Barbasol Championship.
Tyrone Van Aswegen, Robert Streb and Tom Hoge were tied for second with 13 points. YE Yang, the 2009 PGA Championship winner, had 12 points. Bronson Burgoon was the top player still on the course. He had 10 points with five holes to play. The winner gets a spot in the 2020 PGA Championship.