North BERWICK’S Catriona Matthew has always struggled at the Evian Masters and a 74 left her well down the field after the opening day in France. Carly Booth, the only other Scot in the field, had three birdies in a level par 72.
They both trailed a long way behind the nine under par 63 record fired by Stacy Lewis. Runner-up behind Japan’s Ai Miyazato last year, the American had a stunning nine birdie round to lead by two shots from South Korea’s Hee Young Park.
Swede Helen Alfredsson, the only three-time winner, shot 63 on her way to victory in 2008, but Lewis’s score counts as a new record as the course has been lengthened in readiness for the tournament becoming the fifth women’s major next year.
“It’s a great way to start,” said the winner of a major last year, the Kraft Nabisco Championship. “I love coming to Evian. I always feel so relaxed.”