PAULINE del Rosario fired a four-under 68 for a two-stroke lead over Thailand’s Tiranan Yoopan in the first round of the ICTSI Pradera Verde Ladies Classic on Tuesday in Lubao, Pampanga.
Del Rosario birdied three of the first seven holes to take charge, slipped with three straight bogeys from No. 8 before making four consecutive birdies from No. 11 at Pradera Verde Golf and Country Club.
“I struggled with my long game a bit but I hope to play a more steady game in the next two days,” said Del Rosario, seeking to nail a third leg win after scoring a breakthrough at Orchard and then dominating the Baguio stop last June.
Yoopan went on a roller-coaster ride of three birdies against three bogeys in the first eight holes but put herself back in contention with birdies on Nos. 9 and 13.
“I should play a relaxed game, just enjoy it and try to lessen my missed putts,” said Yoopan.
Princess Superal, on break from the Symetra Tour, blew her birdie bids on the first two par-5s but birdied the other two at the back, including the island green finishing hole to salvage a 72, four shots off the pace.
“I’ll try to hit more greens and make the most of my birdie opportunities,” said Superal, who won back-to-back LPGT titles last season at Sherwood and Eastridge.
“It’s tough but we’re kind of having adjusted to the kind of weather after a few games.”
Rodriguez, also a Symetra Tour player, hit four birdies and five bogeys for a 73 for joint fourth with amateur golf star and former leg champion Bernice Olivarez-Ilas, who had one birdie and two bogeys.
Lucy Landicho played steady golf in the first eight holes but made back-to-back double bogeys from No. 9 and wound up with a 75 for joint sixth with Gretchen Villacencio.
Former leg winner Chihiro Ikeda shot 76, The Country Club mainstay Sofia Chabon carded a 77 for ninth, while Apple Fudolin and Japanese amateur golfer Kinjo Mana turned in identical 78s for joint 10th place in the event backed by Custom Clubmakers, BDO, Meralco, Sharp, KZG, PLDT, Champion, Summit Mineral Water and K&G Golf.