Catriona Matthew hits seven bogeys on return

Catriona Matthew. Picture: Neil Hanna

Catriona Matthew. Picture: Neil Hanna

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RUSTY Catriona Matthew made a sluggish start as she returned to action today following a month’s break.

The North Berwick star carded a five-over-par 77 in the first round of the LPGA Tour’s HanaBank Championship to sit ten shots behind four joint-leaders in Korea.

Playing her first event since the Evian Championship, the season’s final major, Matthew signed for seven bogeys, including five in a row from the seventh.

In China, Longniddry’s Raymond Russell made a better start in the Challenge Tour’s Foshan Open.

The East Lothian golfer was handily placed after an opening four-under 68 and was still on that mark after covering his opening seven holes today in level-par.

In Australia, Scott Henry was on course to make the cut in the Perth International in his bid to climb into the top 110 on the Race to Dubai in the final regular event on this season’s European Tour.

After opening rounds of 74 and 72, however, the former Scottish Boys champion needs to go low twice this weekend to hang on to his card.

Closer to home, Braid Hills-attached pro Paul McKechnie is looking forward to playing on the Challenge Tour next season at the age of 36.

It follows him finishing fifth on the PGA EuroPro Tour Order of Merit after securing a share of 12th spot in the season-ending Tour Championship at Prince’s in Kent.

Elliot Saltman (14th), Zack Saltman (36th) and Shaun McAllister (49th) all finished inside the top 50 on the third-tier circuit’s money list.