8am Round-Up: Michelle Wie sets Singapore pace

Michelle Wie on her way to a six-under-par 66 at Sentosa Golf Club. Picture: Getty Images

Michelle Wie on her way to a six-under-par 66 at Sentosa Golf Club. Picture: Getty Images

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American ace Michelle Wie set the pace in the 10th HSBC Women’s Champions event after hitting two purple patches in her opening round in Singapore.

The 27-year-old carded a six-under-par 66 at Sentosa Golf Club to lead by a shot from world No 2 Ariya Jutanugarn, Canadian Brooke Henderson, South Korea’s Inbee Park, American Mo Martin and Swede Anna Nordqvist.

Wie, the 2014 US Women’s Open champion, signed for eight birdies, including a double burst of three in a row, first from the fourth then the 11th on the back nine.

World No 1 Lydia Ko opened with a 69, as did English star Charley Hull, while Catriona Matthew had a one-over 73.

It was another mixed bag for the Scot, who opened with a 12-over 84 in last week’s LPGA event in Thailand before fighting back to finish on level-par.

She had five birdies on this card but also three double-bogeys - two of them at par-3s on the front nine.

Ninteen of the world’s top 20 players are lining up in the event, which has become ‘Asia’s major’.

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Duncan Stewart and Richie Ramsay both made promising starts in the opening round of the Tshwane Open at Pretoria Country Club this morning.

Stewart was a shot off the lead, with Ramsay just one back, after both players enjoyed success on the back nine, having teed off at the 10th.

Stewart, who has made the cut in his last two events, was out in four-under 32, picking up birdies at the 12th, 14th, 17th and 18th.

Ramsay, meanwhile, birdied the 11th, 14th, 15th, 16th and 18th but also had a double-bogey 7 at the 12th on his return to action following a break at home.

Former Scottish Open champion Gregory Havret held the lead after storming the turn in 29 on the front nine, the Frenchman picking up birdies at the second, fourth, fifth, sixth, eighth and ninth.

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Sandy Jones’s long association with the PGA is set to be extended after he steps down as its chief executive at the end of this month.

The Scot, who joined the organisation as Scottish region secretary in 1980 before moving to The Belfry 11 years later, will take up a new post as executive president after handing over the reins to Rob Maxfield.

“I see this as an ambassadorial role and I am delighted to be asked,” said Jones. “I will be available to Rob as and when he feels I can be of assistance and certainly in and around Ryder Cup matters.”

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Scottish players are in the hunt for both individual and team success after two rounds in the African Amateur Championship at Leopard Creek.

While newly-crowned South African champion Christo Lamprecht is still out in front on eight-under, Drumoig’s Connor Syme remained as his closest challenger, lying just a shot behind.

After a second-round 67, Liam Johnston (Dumfries & County) leapt to joint-third, three off the lead, while Jamie Stewart (Old Ranfurly) and Eric McIntosh (Bruntsfield Links) are also in the top 10.

Sitting on 12-under, Scotland, the defending champions, hold a two-shot lead over a South African junior side heading into the final round of the team event.

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Balmore’s Christopher Maclean started best among three Scots in the stroke-play qualifying for the Spanish Amateur Championship on a tough day at El Saler.

After a 74, Maclean is lying in a share of 10th as just one player, Dutchman Pierre Junior Verlaar, broke par with a 69.

Haggs Castle’s Barry Hume is joint-18th after a 75, two shots better than Robert Macintyre, the Glencruitten left-hander sitting in a share of 40th spot.

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A second-round 69 lifted Kylie Henry into the top 10 after 36 holes in the Sun International Ladies Challenge at Sun City in South Africa.

On two-under, the Scot is sitting joint-seventh, six shots behind leader Bonita Bredenhann after the Namibian backed up her opening 66 with a 70.

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Scotland’s three representatives all failed to break 80 in the opening round of the Spanish Ladies’ Amateur Championship at Sherry Golf Jerez.

On a day when the tartan trio all struggled, Hannah McCook signed for an 81, Shannon McWilliam had an 82 and Gabrielle Macdonald had to settle for an 84.

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