India’s Aditi Ashok carded a triple bogey on the first hole en route to a 5-over 77 in the opening round of the Meijer LPGA Classic at Grand Rapids, USA. She now needs a very low round to make the halfway cut at Blythefield Country Club.
Meanwhile, Nasa Hataoka, Leona Maguire, Charley Hull, and Lauren Stephenson carded 7-under 65 each to share the lead. It was Nasa’s first start since she lost a playoff in the U.S. Women’s Open. The 22-year-old birdied three of the last five holes.
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Aditi, who is hoping some competitive play will rekindle her form after having missed out on practice due to the COVID-19 pandemic, was happy to be back on the Tour and see action.
“I am feeling happy to be back in the US. Looking forward to restarting my season here in Grand Rapids,” Aditi said before the start.
“I haven’t practiced in the last six weeks due to lockdown in India but I feel I’ve gotten some reps in the last few days. Hopefully will pick up where I left off and take it one week at a time,” she said.
Ariya Jutanugarn and Min Lee shot 66. Anna Nordqvist was another stroke back with Alison Lee, Sarah Schmelzel, Amy Olson, Sophia Popov, Gabriela Ruffels, Chella Choi, Marina Alex, Su Oh, Xiyu Lin, and Pajaree Anannarukarn.
Lexi Thompson, the 2015 winner, was among a large group of golfers who carded a 68 – including Inbee Park, sisters Nelly and Jessica Korda, and Jennifer Kupcho. Top-ranked Young Ko shot 69.
The major KPMG Women’s PGA Championship is next week at Atlanta Athletic Club.