A mega hole-in-one, fabulous efforts from all the English girls and multiple birdies under the floodlights for Dame Laura. This is our round up of Day One at the OMEGA Dubai Moonlight Classic.
The weather was typically glorious and after a summer of few playing opportunities, the Ladies European Tour and LPGA Tour players looked more grateful than ever to be playing against the glittering Marina skyline of Dubai.
Taking place a Emirates Golf Club, in what is arguably the most glamorous and flashy city in the world, the OMEGA Dubai Moonlight Classic kicked off yesterday in spectacular style.
Offering the chance for half the field to play under floodlights every day (the last shotgun start is 4.35pm), it’s a unique and exciting concept that only launched last year.
Make sure you logon to the LET’s website between 3pm to 6pm to watch live action from Round 2 today and in case you busy getting a last round in yesterday, here are the highlights from Round 1….
Sweden’s Caroline Hedwall smashes a hole-in-one
We could watch this video over and over again. In fact, it might be one of the things that gets us through Lockdown 2.0.
Not only did the six-time winner shoot a bogey-free round of 65, but it also included an absolutely AMAZING hole-in-one on the par 3 17th.
After smashing her ball straight at the flag stick with a 6-iron, the six-time Solheim Cup player said:
“I heard how it hit the pin and then I thought it came off because something white flew off the flag stick. I thought my ball was in the bunker. I walked up and saw a ball in the bunker and remarked there it is but my Pro-Am partner said that it was his ball. So, I walked up to the hole to double check and it was there. I realised just after the hole in one that I’d won a watch, which is cool.”
But despite shooting an absolutely brilliant round, she admitted that night golf provided quite an interesting challenge.
Caroline said: “Night golf is hard, particularly with my vision! I have to trust my caddy to see the ball for me. So, it is tricky and hard to read the greens and be particularly careful seeing all the slopes and walk around the hole because it doesn’t come naturally when you stand behind it like you usually do.”
The 31-year-old finished as the overnight leader, two strokes ahead of runners up Laura Fuenfstueck from Germany and fellow Team Europe Solheim Cup player and French star, Celine Boutier.
Nuria Iturrioz is BACK
Defending champion and 2019 OMEGA Dubai Moonlight Classic winner Nuria Iturrioz proved that she hasn’t lost her knack for conquering the Faldo course.
The shotgun start meant the Spaniard started from the 13th, but she wasn’t worried that this was a bad sign.
“My mum and I like the number 13,” she said.
“She gave me a necklace with this number on it so it’s actually a good thing I started on that tee.”
It definitely didn’t stop her scoring well and she finished T5 with a round of 69.
The English girls continue their charge
Joining the defending champ at T5 was England’s Meghan MacLaren. She played fabulously, even managing the most incredible run of three birdies and an eagle across the 8th to the 11th holes.
Meanwhile, Bronte Law was just behind her at T9 with a round of 70, and Georgia Hall also finished level par and ended T14.
Laura Davies gave the young ones a run for their money
While Catriona Matthew sadly had to withdraw after testing positive, Dame Laura Davies was still able to prove that you can be one of the best competitors on the field at any age.
The 57-year-old multiple major winner finished tied with big names such as our own Georgia Hall, Australia’s Minjee Lee and America’s Alison Lee, and we absolutely loved watching her roll in six birdies throughout her round.
What a legend.
You can see the full leaderboard and follow the scores HERE.