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Dublin: 7 °C Friday 22 November, 2019
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Maguire struggles at Hazeltine, as Harrington makes strong start

There was plenty of Irish interest on the LPGA, PGA and European Tours today.

LEONA MAGUIRE’S HOPES of conjuring a Major challenge evaporated on the opening day of the KPMG PGA Championship at Hazeltine National, as the Cavan native struggled to a six-over-par first round.

Maguire, playing in the third Major of the year on a sponsor’s invite, was unable to continue her recent form and never recovered from a slow start, carding six bogeys to sign for a 78.

LPGA: U.S. Women's Open Conducted by the USGA - Second Round Maguire endured a difficult day on Thursday. Source: SIPA USA/PA Images

The 24-year-old, who has won twice on the Symetra Tour this season, dropped five shots on the front nine and although she steadied the ship around the turn, has left herself with a lot of work to do to make the weekend’s action.

The early lead is held by Hyo Joo Kim of Korea, who carded a three-under-par round of 69 on Thursday, with Annie Park and Lydia Ko among those a shot further behind.

Rio Olympian Stephanie Meadow, playing in her first Major since 2017, gets her first round underway shortly.

Meanwhile, Pádraig Harrington has put himself in a strong position to make his first cut in three PGA Tour events after enjoying a solid opening round at the Travelers Championship.

Harrington, the European Ryder Cup captain, carded three birdies and a bogey en route to a two-under-par round on Thursday at TPC River Highlands, where Americans Ryan Armour and Bronson Burgoon hold the early lead on six-under.

Waterford native Seamus Power was among the later starters and is one-under through nine.

GOLF: JUN 06 PGA - RBC Canadian Open Waterford's Seamus Power. Source: Julian Avram

Elsewhere, Gavin Moynihan hit the right gear at the BMW International Open in Germany today, signing for a two-under 70 to sit four shots off the summit. 

Moynihan’s two birdies were countered by two bogeys, but the highlight of his weather-disrupted round was on the 18th — his ninth hole — when he carded an eagle three.

Paul Dunne, meanwhile, will start his second round in a battle to make the cut after a 74 earlier. 

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Ryan Bailey

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