Griffin and Lanigan one shot off the pace at Student Series final

Ronan MacNamara

Ryan Griffin of Maynooth University (Photo by Oisin Keniry/R&A via Getty Images)

Ronan MacNamara

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Maynooth University duo Ryan Griffin and Kate Lanigan are both one shot off the early lead after the opening round of the R&A Student Tour Series Final.

Playing on the St Andrews Jubilee Course before the final round takes place on the Old Course, both Griffin and Lanigan lead the Order of Merit and are in pole position to earn Palmer Cup spots this July.

Lanigan lies in solo third on two-over after an opening 76 which would be good enough to remain top of the Order of Merit at the end of the tournament.

Lucy Jamieson (University of St Andrews) and Lorna McClymont (University of Stirling) share the lead on plus one.

“I’m obviously aware of where I stand, but that’s not the focus” said Lanigan who won in Italy this year

“As far as I’m concerned, I have to have a good week regardless. Good golf takes care of everything.”

Gusts of 40mph greeted the players on the Jubilee Course in brutally tough conditions.

Griffin arguably should be resting having tweaked his back in the gym before departing for St Andrews but given that he leads the Order of Merit and wants to make a second Palmer Cup appearance he is fighting through the pain.

Griffin was two-under through eleven holes before playing his lsat five holes in six-over but he was still pleased with his effort.

“I wasn’t feeling my best going out, but if you had offered me three-over I’d have taken it,” Griffin said.“I was feeling a bit of pressure about the order of merit, but the situation with my back has taken my mind off it, which is a maybe a silver lining.”

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