Marianne Skarpnord breathes easy after opening round at Women’s Indian Open golf | other sports | Hindustan Times
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Marianne Skarpnord breathes easy after opening round at Women’s Indian Open golf

Norwegian golfer Marianne Skarpnord is leading after the first round at Women’s Indian Open in Gurgaon.

other sports Updated: Nov 10, 2017 22:21 IST
Robin Bose
Norway golfer Marianne Skarpnord is leading at the Women’s Indian Open in Gurgaon.
Norway golfer Marianne Skarpnord is leading at the Women’s Indian Open in Gurgaon.(HT Photo)

Marianne Skarpnord will need to wait and see if she can win the Hero Women’s Indian Open. Though early days, the start at the DLF Golf & Country Club has been promising. At five-under 67, she leads by a shot, but the Norwegian also takes pride in an aspect other than golf.

“I could win the world championship in sleeping if there was one,” she chuckled. Short on rest, what remained of Friday would have been spent catching up on one of her favourite pursuits. “It washes away everything and you are up and about for a fresh start,” she said.

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That’s imperative on a week like this, where the course, the bar raised many times over after the redesign, takes up most of the talk. Talking of bad memories, there was not much to ponder on save the bogey on the fifth. Marianne had reason to be upset, having set herself up well with two consecutive birdies, but chose otherwise.

“I didn’t want to waste energy being angry as the course is demanding anyway.” Here after a considerable gap, tales of the heightened challenge got the competitor in her inquisitive.

“From what I’d heard from the girls earlier on, I tried to draw a picture, but frankly after getting here I was scared,” said the 31-year-old. Getting off lightly was a relief. “If you can get through 18 holes without a three putt, it’s impressive,” she said with pride.

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Forewarned is forearmed, and Marianne, a three-time winner on the Ladies European Tour, took note of the inputs from various sources. She slipped briefly but from there on ensured she stayed safe. Else, it would have been trouble had the ball landed on the wrong side of the pin.

The birdie on the 17th came in for special mention, given the degree of difficulty, and set her up well for another assault at a challenge she’d love to surmount.

Comfortable so far, her routine off the course is falling in place as well. There is some scepticism though, but the fear is not about a week in India and the worrisome air quality in these parts. With a sparkle in the eyes and no signs of laboured breathing, Marianne said she was always cautious outside home. Care is taken over what is eaten, and with the hotel good at what she loves, it’s been pizza for dinner over the past few days.

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Leaderboard

67: Marianne Skarpnord

68: Liz Young; Camille Chevalier

69: Meghan MacLaren; Vani Kapoor; Klara Spilkova; Olivia Cowan; Karolin Lampert; K Muangkhumsakul.