Stacy Bregman has made another strong bid for a maiden professional victory after opening with a two under par 70 to share the lead in the first round of the WPGA Masters at Waterkloof Golf Club on Wednesday.
Bregman and Sweden’s Lena Tornevall top the leaderboard one stroke clear of a host of players, including defending champion Ashleigh Simon.
Bregman led the first round of last week’s Pam Golding Ladies International at Dainfern. But a disappointing 75 on the final day saw her finish tied fourth, and has fuelled her desire to claim a victory this week.
“I’m really looking for a win and I hope I can pull this one off,” said Bregman, who is using these events on the Ladies African Tour to gain some competitive experience early in her professional career before she returns to the Ladies European Tour.
Morgana Robbertze and amateur Kelli Shean both led at three under par at different stages of the round.
But a tricky back nine at the Waterkloof Golf Club saw Robbertze finish the day with a 71 and Shean a 72.
The vastly experienced Rebecca Hudson from England and rookie professional Lumien Lausberg are amongst the list of players grouped at one under.
Lee-Anne Pace, last week’s champion, struggled with a level par 72 in which she couldn’t come to grips with the newly redesigned Waterkloof Golf Club, where renowned designer Peter Matkovich has succeeded in toughening up the old Monument Golf Club layout.
“I struggled from the get go and didn’t make enough birdies on the par-fives,” said Pace, whose frustration peaked at the 12th hole where she carded a double bogey.
“The course is not playing easy. You get really funny lies in the rough, and strange bounces. And the greens are not that easy to read. I think it’s more of a thinking game this week.”
Simon’s one under 71 keeps her in the hunt as she attempts to defend her title.
“I’m very happy with my game, although I would like to hole a few more putts,” said Simon, who switched putters this week. “It seems to be working, but these greens are pretty tricky.”
WPGA Masters, Waterkloof Country Club, Pretoria (Par 72)
Round 1 Scores:
70 Stacy Bregman; Lena Tornevall (Swe)
71 Julie Tvede (Den), Marianne Skarpnord (Nor), Ashleigh Simon*, Kaisa Ruuttila (Fin), Morgana Robbertze, Maria Ohlsson (Swe), Lumien Lausberg, Rebecca Hudson (Eng)
72 Johanna Westerberg (Swe), Sophie Walker (Eng), Natou Soro (Cdi), Kelli Shean*, Hanna-Leena Salonen (Fin), Eleanor Pilgrim (Wal), Lee-Anne Pace, Nora Angehrn (Swi)
73 Amanda Moltke-Leth (Den), Anna Becker (Swe)
74 Crizelda van Niekerk, Emelie Svenningsson (Swe), Shelley Mckevitt (Eng), Andrea Hirschhorn, Fumi Doi (Jpn), Michelle de Vries, Jo Clingan (Eng)
75 Emma Zackrisson (Swe), Zelda Smook*, Viva Schlasberg (Swe), Mercia Pretorius*, Leandri Pieterse, Elin Ohlsson (Swe), Laurette Maritz, Lisa Jean (Aus) , Madeleine Holmblad (Swe), Martina Gillen (Ire), Kirsty Fisher (Eng), Maria Boden (Swe)
76 Suzette Venter, Florence Luscher (Swi), Angie Green (Can), Kim Brookes*, Nicole Becker*, Mandy Adamson
77 Sohvi Harkonen (Fin), Fabienne Haremza (Ger), Henriette Frylinck*, Frederique Dorbes (Fra), Antonella Cvitan (Swe), Claire Coughlan (Ire), Julie Berton (Fra), Vanessa Bell (Eng)
78 Hanna-Sophia Svenningsson (Swe), Cheryl Smith (Eng), Lill Kristin Saether (Nor), Monja Richards, Cecilie Lundgreen (Nor), Jehanne Jail (Fra), Elin Brask (Swe)
79 Santie Koch , Felicity Johnson (Eng), Maria Jimenez de Miguel (Spa), Kelly Hutcherson (Eng), Cuyler Hedley (Can), Sarah Heath (Eng), Nina Hansson (Swe), Nuria Clau (Spa), Yushire Budhram*
80 Frederique Seeholzer (Swi), Edita Nechanicka (Cze), Anne-Sophie Le Nalio (Fra), Zuzana Kamasova (Svk)
81 Josefin Svenningsson (Swe), Larissa Ras*
82 Kim Williams*, Iliska Verwey*, Sandra Eggermont (Ned)
83 Lise Botha
84 Nora Kagonyera (Uga), Odette Grotepas*
86 Jessica Wycherley* (Sco)
87 Michelle Smith (Eng)
South African unless otherwise denoted
(*) denotes Amateur