Scott in control in Killarney

(Killarney, Ireland, May 10 2002) New Zealander Gina Scott fired a four under par 68 to open up a two shot lead after the first round of the Euro165,000 Ladies Irish Open in association with Bord Failte at the Killarney Golf and Fishing club in County Kerry.

The 29-year-old from Teawanatu lobbed in five birdies during the calmer conditions of the morning, only dropping a shot at the final hole to mar an otherwise flawless scorecard.

Finland’s Riikka Hakkarainen takes sole possession of second place with a gutsy 70 in the windier afternoon conditions thanks to four birdies and two bogies.

Five players are locked in the bun-fight at one under par including European number one Raquel Carriedo, who rattled off 17 pars and a birdie, Norway’s Suzann Pettersen, Denmark’s Iben Tinning, Kanna Takanashi from Japan and England’s Trish Johnson, who felt she should have been three or four shots better.

And six players are tied at level par including Marine Monnet from France and English Tour rookie Georgina Simpson from Cleckheaton in Yorkshire.

Johnson – not too chuffed!

Despite having the chance to reach four under par after 14 holes, the 36-year-old from Bristol spurned the opportunity and dropped shots at the 15th and 18th to fall back to one under.

“That was a horrible finish,” said the six-time Solheim Cup player.

“I had a good chance to go to four under at 13 and at 14, so with that finish, to end up one under, having never been in trouble, I’m not too chuffed. I played better than one under par and it could have been a really good score.”