Home Sports US Women’s Open: Irish amateur Aine Donegan joint second at Pebble Beach after replacing broken driver | Golf News

US Women’s Open: Irish amateur Aine Donegan joint second at Pebble Beach after replacing broken driver | Golf News

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US Women’s Open: Irish amateur Aine Donegan joint second at Pebble Beach after replacing broken driver | Golf News

Aine Donegan, who had to use a replacement club after her driver was broken in transit, is joint second after the opening round of the US Women’s Open; Watch the second round live on Friday from 9pm on Sky Sports Mix and – for free – on the Sky Sports Golf YouTube channel

Last Updated: 07/07/23 8:23am

Aine Donegan posted a first-round 69 despite being forced to use a replacement driver

Aine Donegan posted a first-round 69 despite being forced to use a replacement driver

Irish amateur Aine Donegan finished just a shot behind the joint leaders despite having to play with a replacement driver at the opening round of the US Women’s Open.

Donegan, playing in her first tournament on the LPGA Tour, arrived at Pebble Beach after helping Europe reclaim the Vagliano Trophy in Scotland – but her clubs did not reach California until Tuesday and, when they did, her driver was broken.

However, despite having to source a replacement Ping driver, the 21-year-old ended up as one of six players tied for second place behind China’s Xiyu Lin and Hyo Joo Kim of South Korea after her first-round 69.

Highlights from Round One of the US Women's Open at Pebble Beach

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Highlights from Round One of the US Women’s Open at Pebble Beach

Highlights from Round One of the US Women’s Open at Pebble Beach

Despite starting the back nine with consecutive bogeys, Donegan made five birdies and also holed out from 96 yards for eagle at the par-four 15th hole.

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“It’s like everything happens for a reason, the clubs were late and then the driver came and it was broken,” she said. “All of a sudden I have no choice but to put this Ping driver in.

“Honestly I am delighted I did. The whole thing has been a bit surreal to be honest – nearly every five minutes it’s like a pinch-me moment.

“It wouldn’t be the first time I started bogey-bogey. For me to come back then and finish how I finished and play the rest of the round, I’m really proud of myself for that.”

Xiyu Lin shares the lead after the opening round of the US Women's Open

Xiyu Lin shares the lead after the opening round of the US Women’s Open

World No 9 Lin, the highest-ranked player without an LPGA Tour win, carded a four-under 68 at Pebble Beach and was later joined by Kim, who holed a 20-foot birdie at the 17th to draw level with her rival.

Lin registered five birdies in her round and just a single bogey, at the final hole, while Kim piled up four birdies over her first eight but then had a bogey at the next before recovering to become co-leader again.

Joining Donegan on 69 were fellow Irish player Leona Maguire – who birdied two of her final four holes – Nasa Hataoka of Japan, South Korea’s Hae Ran Ryu and USA’s Bailey Tardy and Allisen Corpuz.

England’s Jodi Ewart Shadoff opened with a one-under-par 71, two better than compatriot Charley Hull and Scotland’s Gemma Dryburgh.

Hyo Joo Kim's 20-foot birdie putt at the 17th kept her level with Lin at the top of the leaderboard

Hyo Joo Kim’s 20-foot birdie putt at the 17th kept her level with Lin at the top of the leaderboard

Another trio of English players – Alice Hewson, Charlotte Thomas and Bronte Law – finished on 74, with Georgia Hall a further two strokes back.

Rose Zhang, the 20-year-old sensation who won on her professional debut earlier this season, also opened with a 74.

World No 1 Jin Young Ko made only one birdie in an opening 79, three worse than No 2 Nelly Korda, who put her opening drive over the cliff and onto the beach at the 10th.

Natthakritta Vongtaveelap of Thailand only made it through five holes of the first round before she was disqualified for her caddie using a rangefinder, which is allowed at other LPGA events.

Watch the US Women’s Open throughout the week live on Sky Sports. Live coverage continues Friday from 9pm on Sky Sports Mix, the red button on Sky Sports Golf, and – for free – on the Sky Sports Golf YouTube channel.

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