Former LPGA Championship winner Anna Nordqvist of Sweden fired an opening 66 to grab a one-stroke lead over the US’ Michelle Wie in the US$1.5 millilub Pattaya Old Course yesterday.
Playing under overcast skies, the 26-year-old, who is based in Florida, hit six birdies, two bogeys and an eagle on the 15th to take a solo lead at six-under-par in the 70-player tournament.
Three more US players are a stroke further back on 68 — Lexi Thompson, Jennifer Johnson and Angela Stanford, whose round was aided by a hole-in-one on the par three, 146-yard eighth hole.
World No. 1 and defending champion Inbee Park of South Korea hit a 71 to join a large group of players on one-under that also includes world No. 3 Stacy Lewis, 2012 LPGA Championship winner Feng Shanshan of China and Australian Karrie Webb, who just claimed a home tournament in Victoria last Sunday.
Taiwan’s Candie Kung shot a one-over 73.
Additional reporting by staff writer