Disciplined Maguire in contention at Women’s PGA Championship

Ronan MacNamara

Leona Maguire tees off on the second hole in round two at the Meijer LPGA Classic (Photo by David Berding/Getty Images)

Ronan MacNamara

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Leona Maguire’s quest for a maiden major title got off to a ‘stress free’ start as she opened with a 69 at the Women’s PGA Championship.

Maguire is three shots off the early lead on two-under-par at Baltusrol with South Africa’s Lee-Anne Pace setting the target at the summit, one ahead of Brooke Henderson.

The Ballyconnell woman hit every fairway and missed just two greens in her opening round as she carded four birdies and a brace of bogeys.

“Hit every fairway and nearly every green, which in a major championship is as stress-free as you can make it,” said the world number 12.

“I was disciplined, stayed patient, hit a lot of fairways, hit a lot of greens. Didn’t putt quite as well as I would have liked, but the greens were a touch slower. I don’t know if they didn’t cut them as much this morning with the rain or if the rain slowed them down. They weren’t quite as fast this morning. But gave myself quite a few chances actually, a few more than I expected to have.”

Maguire clinched her second LPGA Tour title at the Meijer Classic as she steamrolled the field with a closing 64, this week however, it’s about staying patient.

“Yeah, I think it’s just a mentality. I think you need equal amounts of patience, but this week it’s definitely more conservative targets; middles of greens are good. If you’re between clubs, a lot of the time we were taking the shorter one, just trying to stay out of that rough around the greens as much as we possibly can, and the greens are obviously firm, so you just have to really respect the golf course and know that par is a really good score on any hole as opposed to last week where you felt like you could almost birdie every hole.”

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