England’s Laura Davies opened with a flawless seven-under-par 65 to take a two stroke lead after the first round of the Hero Honda Women’s Indian Open.
Davies fired seven birdies at DLF Golf and Country Club, with four on the front nine and three on the back nine.
She moved two strokes clear of Australian rookie Rebecca Flood and Praewnappa Phol-Uayporn of Thailand.
Sweden’s Louise Friberg was a shot further back in fourth on 68, followed by South African Lee-Anne Pace and Veronica Zorzi, tied for fifth on 69 and Thailand’s Russamee Gulyanamitta in seventh on 70.
Davies is targeting her fifth win of the season after victories this year in New Zealand, Germany, Austria and Spain.
Having had to go through the agony of being in the hotel for three days without her golf equipment, the Englishwoman only got news that her golf bag arrived about 9am this morning.
“I had to rush to the airport this morning before my tee-off and again make a frantic appeal as the airport authorities did not want to release the bag which arrived from China without signing. The golf officials spoke to the airport people and got my bag released,” she said.
Once back at the club with her golf bag, Davies said her mood changed for the better. “There you are I played well – seven birdies and without dropping a stroke,” she said.
Davies’ birdies came on the first, seventh, eighth, ninth, 10th, 15th and 18th. “I played as if nothing eventful had happened to me in India, but the two little girls – defending champion Pornanong Phatlum (72) and local star Sharmila Nicollet (78) kept me good company. They have vast potential. I can see that in them,” she said.
Davies got a little serious when asked about the Henderson Money List. “Well, that’s why I’m here – to win and narrow the gap with Lee-Anne (Pace) and then go for the flnal fling in Dubai to decide who gets to win the most money and the bonus that comes with it.”
She is currently second on the LET’s Henderson Money List, trailing Lee-Anne Pace by €62,946 and can bridge the gap with this week’s €33,750 first prize.
She is trying to win it for the eighth time in her 25-year career, which would be another record for Britain’s best ever golfer.