DOTTIE Ardina rolled in a 30-foot birdie putt on the ninth hole to salvage an even par 72 and wrest a one-stroke lead over local bet Amanda Tan in the first round of the 21st SICC-DBS Junior Invitational Golf Championship on Tuesday at the Singapore Island Country Club in Singapore.
Ardina hit four birdies against the same number of bogeys, including a three-putt miscue on No. 1.
Still, it put the 18-year-old ace shotmaker on track for another title after winning the Taiwan Amateur, Penang Open and Cangolf Am, among others, this year.
Tan settled for a 73 while Thai Pannarat Thanapunboonyarat struggled with a 74 in the overall championship.
Ardina also leads the 17-19 category, four ahead of Singapore’s Joey Poh, who made a 76. Ariel See, also of Singapore, and Filipina Sarah Ababa turned in identical 78s.
Tan, meanwhile, took the lead in the 13-16 category, posting a one-shot lead over Thanapunboonyarat, while Princess Superal groped for form and hobbled with a 77 for joint third with Inez Wanamarta and Benyapa Niphatsopon of Thailand.
Starting at the back nine, Ardina knocked down a 10-footer for birdie on the 11th, made a tap-in birdie on the 15th but dropped shots on the 17th and 18th.
She gunned down a 15-footer for birdie on the second to negate her bogey on No. 1 but missed the green on the sixth and ended up with another bogey before closing out with that lead-grabbing long birdie putt on the ninth.