GOLF: Lancastrians lead in Italy

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The Independent Online
THE Solheim Cup newcomer Lora Fairclough beat the fading light to hit a sparkling five- under-par 67 to share the lead with Tina Yarwood, another Lancastrian, after the first round of the BMW Italian Open at Lignano yesterday.

They lead by two strokes from Ireland's Maureen Madill, with 12 players having to complete their rounds today after heavy rain halted play for two hours.

Fairclough did particularly well since she had suffered a stomach uspet the previous night. 'All I wanted to do last night was go home. I was so ill. But I feel fine now,' she said. Fairclough never went over par and holed a putt of 10 feet for a birdie on the last green as darkness was closing in.

Yarwood recorded six birdies in a career-best round of 67 which contained only 27 putts.

'I have had putting problems all season but Joanne Mills advised me to move back from the ball a couple of inches and it did the trick,' Yarwood said.

BMW ITALIAN OPEN (Lignano) First round scores (GB or Irl unless stated): 67 T Yarwood, L Fairclough. 69 M Madill. 70 S Moon (US), S Hodge, J Arnold (NZ), E Farquharson- Black, M-L de Lorenzi (Fra). 71 L Weima (Hol), V Michaud (Fra), K Cayce (US), J Allmark (Swe), P Sterner (Swe). 72 S Gautrey (Aus), N Moult, S Nicklin, C Hjalmarsson (Swe). 73 M Preti (Italy), X Wunsch (Spain), C Figg-Currier (US), A Arruti (Spain), C Matthew, D Patterson (US), E Knuth (Spain), K Douglas, C Dibnah (Aus), D Reid, D Dowling.