Date: January 26, 2018
Author: Martin Blake

Smith fires in Bahamas


Australia's Sarah Jane Smith has made a great start on the first day of a new LPGA Tour season, shooting four-under to be within a shot of the lead in the Pure Silk Bahamas LPGA Challenge.

Smith, ranked 85th in the world after a consistent 2017 season, is within sight of the lead held by Canada's Brooke Henderson at four-under, but it was a tough day for the professionals in high winds, play ultimately being suspended late in round one.

"It was windy,'' said Smith. "Right now it's pretty crazy out there. I mean, I was hitting all sorts of clubs from numbers you wouldn't even think of. I hit a nine iron from 88 metres and didn't event get there!''

Smith does not mind the tougher conditions. "Love it,'' she said. "I grew up playing in the wind, not like this by any means, but I enjoy it. I had a really relaxing off-season, got to spend a lot of time with my family back home, then I've had a couple of weeks in Orlando. Hopefully it's the start of a good season.''

Katherine Kirk (three-under) also is in contention while Hannah Green shot a one-over par 74 in her first round as a fully-fledged LPGA Tour player.

Victorian Su Oh shot a two-over par 75.