Date: February 04, 2016
Author: Alex Tigani

Reigning champion lands ace

Reigning women’s Victorian Open champion Marianne Skarpnord received an early birthday present from the heavens after landing her first tournament hole-in-one this morning.

The Norwegian finished with a par of 73 during her opening round of this year’s tournament ahead of her group members Hannah Green (Amateur) and Laura Davies (England) who finished with scores of three and four (over par) respectively.

However Skarpnord admitted her ace may not have taken place had she not stuck to her decision making.

“The wind was very difficult so I decided to use my nine-iron however right before I attempted to hit it I felt a gush of wind so I paused my shot,” she reflected.

“I waited for a moment to hit a perfect nine-iron shot – it just needed to carry on the green and it landed by a centimetre.”

She added, “And kaaa-ching….. It rolled in.”

While Skarpnord may not have matched her top-three opening day position from the 2015 tournament she still maintained her loveable smile and humour when summing up her feat.

“I figured I hadn’t had enough attention this week with the former world number-one (Karrie Webb) playing alongside me,” she laughed.

“I’m wondering about the car selection now, I’ve asked for a Porsche, can settle for a Mercedes and I can even do (with) a BMW.”

She added, “I’d imagine I can just go on the other side and choose.”

Skarpnord had scored four previous aces however this morning’s hole-in-one, which took place on the 12th hole of the beach course (par-3 from 132m), was her first in tournament play.

The achievement ironically came a week out from her 30th birthday in what Skarpnord will hope to be her first Olympic year as a participant.

“The rest of my morning wasn’t so magical so at least I had that shot,” she said.