Date: January 27, 2012
Author: Australian Ladies Professional Golf

ALPG Tour – NSW PAIR LEAD HOME OPEN AT OATLANDS

(27 January 2012 – Sydney, New South Wales)

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New South Wales&apos Karen Lunn has continued her great start to the year with a round of 4-under par 68 to share the lead with Sydney’s Rachel Bailey after the opening round of the Bing Lee / Samsung Women’s NSW Open played at Oatlands Golf Club today.
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rnBoth Lunn and Bailey sit atop a jam packed leaderboard, with no fewer than 21 players within three shots.
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rnThe morning players had to contend with persistent showers, while the afternoon field faced overcast and blustery conditions.  
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rnLunn, whose round included six birdies and two bogeys, said after her round “I’ve been playing well for a while, I’m hitting the ball well, my short game is pretty sound.”
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rn“You just have to ride the wave for as long as it lasts. You don&apost know how long it&aposs going to last in this game. I’m playing well, feeling pretty healthy, my body is pretty good at the moment which, obviously when you get to my age, is one of the key elements,” added Lunn, a nine time winner on the Ladies European Tour.
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rnBailey, who is returning after hip surgery mid last year, was happy with her round which started with a bogey, but then posted five birdies in her remaining holes.
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rn“I played really consistent, hit nearly every fairway and made some clutch putts. The greens are really soft, so you could throw it in there like a dart,” she said after her round. “I hit some close, made a couple of putts, made pars on everything else. I putted really well, even from 20-30 feet, I was still putting well,” Bailey added.
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rnAfter missing all of last season’s Ladies European Tour the 31-year old is keen to play and when asked about the second round, stated, “I’m just looking forward to playing tournaments, just getting back into swing of it, tournament golf is what I have been missing for the last year, so I’m just excited to be out here.”
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rnLeading the chase is none other than 14-year teenage World No.1 amateur Lydia Ko.  Ko, fresh off her Australian Amateur win on the weekend is one of six players just one back. South Australian Stephanie Na, South Korean Hae-Rym Kim, New South Wales’ Nikki Garrett, Norway’s Marianne Skarpnord and Victorian Stacey Keating all posted rounds of69.
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rnFive players are at two-under par and right in the mix including Wales’ Becky Morgan who is playing here for the first time and England’s Melissa Reid who is the highest ranked player here this week on the Rolex World Golf Rankings. Frenchwoman Gwladys Nocera,  Queensland’s Tamara Johns and two-time winner of this event New South Wales’ Sarah Oh made up the five players. 
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rnKo, is currently the leading amateur section of the tournament at three-under par.  The leading amateur at the conclusion of the tournament receives a $1,000 voucher managed through an HSBC banking account and administered by Golf NSW.  The voucher will directly contribute to the reimbursement of the player&aposs expenses.
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rnOne of the pre tournament favourites, Queensland’s Katherine Hull, got off to a great start but lost her swing mid round to finish at one-over par 73 and is tied for 31st position.  One of the crowd favourites, England’s Laura Davies had a frustrating day to also finish at one-over.
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