Defending champion Beth Coulter is in a three-way tie for the lead after the opening round of the AIG Irish Women’s Amateur Close Championship at Connemara Golf Links.
The Kirkistown Castle golfer shot a four-under 68 and is joined at the top of the leaderboard by Anna Abom and Kate Dillon, who also took advantage of the sunny yet windy conditions in Galway.
Abom was out early in the second group of the day and despite a bogey on the first, the young Edmondstown prospect finds herself at the summit thanks to a birdie on 18.
Oughterard’s Dillon also recovered from an early bogey before producing a strong finish that saw three birdies over the closing five holes to ensure she would begin the second round level with Coulter and Abom.
“I played well, you know, I drove it well, and I sunk a few putts alright, so yeah I was happy enough with it.” said Dillon coming off the course.
Connemara provides the unique test that is links golf, and Dillon is enjoying the challenge of the different conditions facing the players this year.
“The ground is pretty burnt so it ran a good bit, which helped get that distance, but the greens were bouncy enough. Yeah it was nice.”
When asked how she is feeling ahead of tomorrow’s second round and the weekend to come, Dillon, who finished 11th at the Flogas Irish Women’s Amateur Championship, appeared relaxed.
“I’ll try do the same thing again I guess, and yeah just enjoy it I guess”
The weather is expected to turn for Friday’s second round of stroke play action, which at the end of play will see the leading 16 players qualify for Championship match play, whilst the next available 16 players will qualify for Plate match play.