The first round of the S4C Wales Ladies Championship of Europe is underway in tough conditions at Conwy Golf Club in North Wales.

With strong winds and light showers this morning, there were only five birdies in the first two hours of play.

Italy’s Federica Piovano, who won her sole Ladies European Tour victory in 2005 in Austria, was at the top of the leader board on one under par after eight holes.

The defending champion Karen Stupples teed off at 9.10am and started with a bogey on the 11th hole, but is at two over after 11 holes which was within the top 12 places on the leader board.

She is playing with the Portugal Ladies Open champion Karen Lunn of Australia, who was also on two over after 11 holes and local favourite Becky Brewerton, who opened with back-to-back bogeys and was five over after 11.

Today’s colourful weather forecast on the blackboard outside the pro shop, sponsored by Macwet rain gloves, says: “Round one sees murky dismal and his bag of gloom bring angry looking skies along with strong winds from the north-west. Any light showers during the a.m. will scamper easterly leaving the p.m. dry, along with gusts of 35 mph. Temperatures way below the seasonal average. Irish Sea Crossing: don’t go!