Tough going in Texas

Tough going in Texas

25/10/2019

Great Britain and Ireland found the going tough on the first day of the inaugural Women’s PGA Cup in Austin, Texas, but Tracy Loveys' five-strong team was not alone.

None of the five nations competing on the Foothills Course at Barton Creek Resort and Spa broke par in a tournament in which the best three scores from five count.

Nevertheless, Australia, Great Britain and Ireland, and Sweden have a lot of ground to make up to prevent the hosts and Canada turning the tournament into an unofficial North American championship.

The USA, with Brittany Kelly posting the best round of the day, ended the first of three rounds on three-over-par, two shots clear of their neighbours.

Kelly, who carded a three-under-par round of 69, was one of two players to break par; Canada’s Christine Wong was the other on one-under.

For Great Britain and Ireland, meanwhile, Scotland’s Heather MacRae (top) carried the standard with a four-over-par round of 76. In doing so the reigning Titleist and FootJoy Women’s PGA Champion recovered from a start that saw her five-over after seven holes.

A birdie at the par-four second proved a false dawn as dropped shots at the next three holes were followed by a double bogey at the par-four seventh. A birdie at the par-three ninth heralded a recovery which, although tempered by bogeys at 10 and 17, ended on a high with a birdie at the 18th.

In terms of scoring, MacRae was supported by Maria Tulley and Suzanne Dickens (above) who posted respective scores of eight and nine-over to give Great Britain and Ireland a final total of 21-over.

All of which leaves them in fourth place, three shots adrift of Australia and two clear of Sweden.

Reflecting on the day, Loveys said: "I know that some of my team are a little disappointed with their score today but, I can’t stress enough how tough this track is. It gives nothing away and every par or birdie is hard earned.

"Our injured soldier, Maria, played great today despite a constant ache in her right forearm. She was just so happy to be out there playing, as the previous two days had been a real struggle for her.

"There is all to play for on Friday and Saturday and the lead, or the gap in the scoring, can change in the blink of an eye."

For a full list of scores from the Women's PGA Cup CLICK HERE.