Photograph courtesy of Golf NSW
Iceland's Valdis Jonsdottir will take a 3-shot lead into tomorrow's second round of the Worrells Women's NSW Open, after shooting a superb opening round 8-under par 63 at Queanbeyan Golf Club this afternoon.
The 29-year-old played in the more comfortable afternoon conditions after many players had struggled with the cold temperatures they were greeted with this morning. The mercury was struggling to reach the 6 degrees Celcius mark as the first groups teed off this morning proving to be quite a shock to many players after a run of five weeks of temperate weather on the ALPG Tour this summer.
Jonsdottir started her round from the 9th tee this afternoon and was quick out of the blocks making birdie at 4 of her opening 5 holes to set up her round.
The only slip up of the day came at the tricky par 4 18th hole where she made a bogey 5, but the Icelandic star bounced back with birdies at the 1st and 2nd holes followed by an eagle at the 3rd hole to take her to 7 under for the round with 5 holes to play.
There was more to come as Jonsdottir made yet another birdie at the 7th hole and par at her final hole, signing for a career-low 63.
Jonsdottir has been battling with lower back problems the past few weeks here in Australia and has missed the past two halfway cuts at Bonville and the ActewAGL Canberra Classic last week at Royal Canberra.
The 29-year-old described her round today as ‘quite easy’, adding the key was just to try and swing it a little easier.
“My back has been hurting a lot the last five weeks, so I decided this week I am going to try and swing it quite slow.
“I kept the ball in play, I hit a lot of good iron shots into the greens and made a lot of good putts.”
Johnsdottir had little idea an eight-under round was coming, adding she hadn’t made any putts in her practice round or her pre-round warm up.
“In my practice round I struggled a bit, and in my warm up I didn’t make anything, But on the course, I said whatever; I just picked a line and went with it, and it worked out quite well.”
Jonsdottir, the first Icelandic player male or female to qualify for a major championship, has twice finished third on the Ladies European Tour, at the Sanya Ladies Open back in 2017 and 3rd at the Australian Ladies Classic Bonville in 2018.
In second place is Frenchwoman Astrid Vayson De Pradenne at five under par, while the leading Australian, Rebecca Artis sits a shot further back after shooting a very welcome 4-under par 67 after struggling with her game most of this summer. Tied with Artis at -4 is Spain's Carmen Alonso, with Kiwi Munchin Keh sitting in a tie for 5th place at -3.
Pre-tournament favourite Sarah Kemp is still well in contention after shooting an even-par 71 this morning.
Round 1 results and round 2 pairings can be found HERE
Round 2 will get underway at 7:30 am on Friday morning at Queanbeyan Golf Club, entry is FREE for spectators.
Follow the live scoring at www.alpg.com.au
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