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Dublin: 2°C Sunday 11 April 2021

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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