Nicole Garcia
  • Team Young hold a one-shot lead at Laguna National
  • Nicole Garcia fires a five-under-par 67 to top the individual leaderboard

Team Young sit at the top of the leaderboard on 16-under-par after the first day of the Aramco Team Series presented by Public Investment Fund – Singapore.

The quartet of Liz Young, Gabriella Cowley, Anne-Charlotte Mora and amateur Elaine Widjaja, who all teed off from the 10th hole, combined for an excellent first round with no dropped shots being included on the scorecard.

It was a blistering front nine for Team Young who made the turn in 10-under-par and they continued their form on the back nine to reach a total of 16-under-par and hold a one-shot lead.

“As a team we did well on the par-fives,” said LET winner Young. “I made a couple of birdies but thanks to Gabs’ eagle and our amateur’s eagle that definitely helped. Overall, it’s a really good result.

“I asked Elaine for a putting lesson halfway around because she could read those putts. She is from Indonesia, so I guess she’s used to the grainy greens. She played fantastically and helped the team a lot.”

Cowley added: “It’s obviously so nice to play with Liz. We’ve played together a few times, but the whole team atmosphere is always good and always nice to play.”

Three teams sit one shot further back in a share for second place with Team Wolf, Team Hedwall and Team Broch Estrup all on 15-under-par.

In a similar vein to the leaders, all three teams did not count a dropped shot on their scorecard with the players dovetailing well at Laguna National Golf Resort Club.

Team Wolf and Team Broch Estrup both had a fast start going out in 10-under-par and then added a further five-under-par on their back nines.

While Team Hedwall spread their scoring more evenly going out in eight-under-par and coming home in seven-under-par.

Team Simmermacher and Team Gustavsson are tied for fifth on 14-under-par with four teams in T7 on 13-under-par including Team Spilkova, Team Wikstrom, Team Babnik and Team Garcia.

In the Individual event, it is South Africa’s Nicole Garcia who leads by one shot having fired an opening round of 67 (-5)

Garcia, who has captained her Team to victory in both London and Jeddah previously, rolled in seven birdies and two bogeys on day one.

“It was really nice to start like that,” said the South African. “It was a bit disappointing that I couldn’t finish it off nicely, but at the end of the day, I’m still happy with my score.

“It’s nice to come in with a low round, especially starting that way you’re not chasing anything. I was having a lot of fun with my amateur and my two other pros, so I think that was part of it.

“I think these are the smallest greens I’ve ever played on, so they’re really interesting approach shots. You’ve got to be really precise off the tee because if you don’t get a good angle into these greens, it’s quite difficult to hold.”

Five players are tied for second place including Austria’s Christine Wolf and England’s Eleanor Givens who were both on Team Wolf.

The duo are flying the flag in both competitions after their rounds of 68 (-4) on the first day in Singapore.

Captain Wolf said: “I did hit a lot of shots close and made some putts. It was nice. We had a really good atmosphere, so it was nice playing out there.”

While England’s Givens added: “I think I probably hit three of my best shots ever today on this course. I was quite pleased with that. I made an eagle and then I nearly had a hole-in-one on the 17th, I was probably less than a centimetre from the hole.”

Wolf and Givens are also joined on four-under-par by Czechia’s Klara Davidson Spilkova, France’s Pauline Roussin and Sweden’s Linn Grant.

Six players are one shot further back in a tie for seventh place with Austria’s Sarah Schober, Denmark’s Nicole Broch Estrup, France’s Agathe Sauzon, England’s Young, Thailand’s Trichat Cheenglab and American Danielle Kang on three-under-par.

The second round begins on Friday at 8.35 am local time and it will see the conclusion of the Team event.

Follow all the action on @LETGolf on Instagram and Twitter and Ladies European Tour on Facebook and YouTube – #RaiseOurGame #BringTheEnergy.