DUBAI: Aditi Ashok began her quest for a Desert Double, as she opened with a modest one-under 71 in the opening round of the Omega Dubai Ladies Classic at Emirates Golf Club on Wednesday. Aditi, who won the Fatima Bint Mubarak Golf in Abu Dhabi earlier this year, had three birdies against one bogey in the round and is placed T-29th.
Meanwhile, Thai Supamas Sangchan rode on her short game as she fired a bogey-free five-under-par 67 to seize the early lead. Starting from the 10th tee, the 21-year-old Bangkok native came to life on the front nine after making the turn at one-under. She reeled off four birdies in six holes to leave a strong field trailing in her wake.
Noora Tamminen celebrated the centenary of Finland's independence in style, producing the shot of the day when she aced the par-3, 11th to join fellow countrywoman Minea Blomqvist, also dressed in her national colours, and Nanna Koerstz Madsen of Denmark for a share of second one shot adrift.
Dame Laura Davies mixed five birdies with two bogeys to move into a seven-way tie for seventh on three under as the 2009 Dubai Ladies Classic champion In-Kyung Kim settled for a one-over 73 on a day when 45 players broke par.
Aditi, who was the rookie of the year in 2016 but played a lot on the LPGA in 2017, opened with a bogey. She got back that shot with a birdie on third but dropped another shot on seventh. Birdies on 10th and 14th on the back nine helped her get back to red numbers and she finished at one-under.
Aditi managed to convert only two of the four par-5s into birdies and an improvement on that alone will help her make a good upward move.
American Brittany Lincicome, making her debut in Dubai, carded a one-under 71 to sit four shots off the pace along with Aditi and China's Muni He, who has just turned professional.