Bland anything but to lead Irish Seniors at Carlow

Sonja Bland (South Africa) - Picture by Cashman Photography

​South Africa’s Sonja Bland fired a rock-solid one-over par round of 76 to lead the way after day one of the Irish Senior Women’s Open Stroke Play at a pristine Carlow Golf Club.

Bland posted four birdies to head the field by one with Headfort’s Maria O’Reilly part of a three-way tie for second at plus-two alongside Canadian Judith Kyrinis and Gigi Higgins from the United States.

Ballybunion’s Margaret McAuliffe and Milltown’s Deirdre Walsh are tied fifth just two shots back while in an ominous warning to the field, reigning Senior Close Champion Suzanne Corcoran (Portumna) is just three off the pace.

Defending champion and 71-year-old Beatriz Arenas of Guatemala finds herself with a lot of work to do after posting an opening 88.

Thursday’s tee times HERE

Results after round one

76        S Bland (South Africa)

77        J Kyrinis  (Canada); M O’REILLY (Headfort); G Higgins (USA)

78        M McAuliffe (Ballybunion); D WALSH (Milltown)

79        S Corcoran (Portumna)

80        L Henry (USA); T Quinn (USA); P DORAN (Donabate); G MCMULLEN (The Island)

81        L Culver (USA); C Wickham (Laytown & Bettystown); V Shannon (Lahinch); J LITTLE (Canada); A TAYLOR (Malahide)

82        T Caldabaugh (USA); B Neal (USA)

83        M Kaarnalahti (Finland); P WALSH (Headfort); N Beck (USA); C Creekmore (USA); O FOLEY (Headfort)

84        C HOPKINS (Woodbrook); G Linter (Belvoir Park); I Steinberg (Canada); S Mc Elroy (Grange); C Reilly (The Heath); M Duane (Hermitage)

85        K Evans (Royal County Down Ladies)

86        S O’Herlihy (Muskerry); M MacLAREN (Royal Portrush); S Podolsky (USA); M Sudway (Old Conna ); E TIRANTE (Italy)

87        H Ekstrom (Finland); L Bolger (Carlow); S Caton (England); L OWENS (Malahide)

88        M CAMPION (Killarney Golf & Fishing Club); B Arenas (Guatemala); F Corbett (Castletroy); D Lacey (Carlow Golf Club); A Nolan (Grange); M Power (Dungarvan); P Murray (Naas)

89        M Gotfredson (USA); A CODUTI (Italy); M Dempsey (Charlesland); I Brien (England); E Blackmon (USA)

90        M MELICAN (Old Conna); C Delaney (Carlow)

91        M skog (Finland); M Conlon (Portarlington); K Lucey (England); B Swords-Cox (Carlow); S MCCAFFREY (Lucan); V Hassett (Lahinch)

93        E Neville (Bearna)

94        D Scarborough (Temple)

97        H Fogarty (Castlecomer); J Rafuse (Canada)