(Killarney, May 9 2002) European number one Raquel Carriedo from Spain will be gunning for back to back wins and the successful defence of her title at the Euro165,000 Ladies Irish Open in association with Bord Fáilte, which starts Friday at the magnificent Killarney Golf and Fishing club in County Kerry.

The 31-year-old from Zaragoza, who won her fourth career title in Tenerife last week, has already secured her place in Europe’s 2002 Solheim Cup and will be gunning for a consecutive order of merit title at the end of this year if she continues her sparkling form.

Johnson – back from Old Trafford just in time!

“It was fantastic and well worth the long trip there and back,” said Johnson, who flew from Cork to Stansted on Wednesday morning, drove to Old Trafford, watched the match and made her way back via Stansted to Ireland in time for another nine holes practice on Thursday afternoon!

“The course is fabulous and I loved it when I played on Tuesday and I played great too. The greens are so enormous here that the pins will make the golf course.

“I’m confident again and at least there are no high winds to contend with so hopefully, I can play my way back into form this week.”

Pettersen, who lies fourth on the 2002 order of merit, is looking forward to a productive week, and was in fine fettle on the eve of the event, despite suffering from flu.

“I didn’t think I was going to be able to play in the Pro-Am, but I had a little Irish whiskey last night and that seemed to help,” laughed the 21-year-old from Oslo, who led the Tenerife Ladies Open after round one and was the only player under par in 45mph winds.

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