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Many of the big teams survived scares on day one of the Toro Women's Interprovincial at the St Clair Golf Club in Dunedin today.
Wellington, Waikato, Bay of Plenty and Canterbury were all made to sweat as they were put under pressure by lesser-fancied rivals in the opening rounds of the seven-round championship.
Auckland and North Harbour, the finalists at Whakatane last year, made solid starts winning their only matches over Aorangi and Tasman respectively after having the bye this morning.
But it was the close shaves from the other contenders that was the talking point.
Wellington, who has won the title on five occasions, and came into the event as one of the favourites, were being outplayed by a determined Manawatu/ Wanganui outfit in round one.
Manawatu/Wanganui No 5 Kelly Nicholas and No 3 Brydie Hodge got their team on the board with wins and Stephanie Hyatt was 1up with four holes to play against her rival Lucy Davis.
But the Wellington No 4 rallied and turned her match around to win the contest 1up.
"I knew that I was under pressure and that my match would have a big say in whether we won or not," said the 22-year-old from the Manor Park Golf Club.
"But I stuck to my processes and even when I was four down I thought I would come back. My putting was really solid throughout the match and in those last four holes it was clutch. We knew that they wouldn't be easy to beat but it was good to get the win.
"We think we have as good a chance as anyone here to win this week and we are looking forward to the next few days."
Wellington's Julianne Alvarez and Te Rongopai Clay finished the job with convincing wins by margins of 5 and 4 and 4 and 2 respectively.
Wellington beat Northland comfortably in the end by 4-1 this afternoon.
Meanwhile, Waikato also managed a fine comeback. The 2011 finalists lost its first two matches against Taranaki but its leading three players Hanna Seifert, Sarah Bradley and Charlotte Willson all came home strong to secure the 3 - 2 victory.
Bay of Plenty, who has won the title 17 times, was also tested by Southland.
Bay No.1 Zoe Brake, who has again returned from the Navy to play the Toro, was beaten 2 and 1 by Robyn Pullar and Grace Senior was defeated at the last by Angela Gerken.
But Tyla Kingi, Susan Lines and Alanna Campbell got them home with crucial wins.
The Bay and Waikato had the bye in the afternoon and will look to catch Wellington and Canterbury who finish day one the only unbeaten teams from two matches.
Canterbury opened in impressive fashion this morning as they dismissed Hawkes Bay 4-1.
But they had to fight to overcome Taranaki 3-2 this afternoon with standout performances coming from Sylvie Williams and Jess Guezenrodt.
Special mention must go to Otago No 5 Susan Greig who won her first match of the day 10 and 8 over Heather Oldfield. The hosts got off to a mixed start with a win over Aorangi and a loss to Hawkes Bay.
Scores: Toro Women's Interprovincial Round One and Two Scores, St Clair Golf Club, Dunedin
Round One Scores:
Otago 4 Aorangi 1
Laura Hoskin bt Catherine Bell 1up, Jo Hicks- Beach bt Catherine Knight 1up, Liz McRae bt Ginny Bolderston 1up, Dale Dagg lost to Nicole Nathan 4/2, Susan Greig bt Heather Oldfield 10/8
Canterbury 4 Hawkes Bay 1
Sylvie Williams bt Kate Chadwick 1up, Elisha Crosbie bt Jaimie McIvor 2/1, Jess Guenzerodt bt Anglea Jones 3/1, Zhantel Weekes lost to Tessa McDonald 4/2, Kate Turner bt Lucy Owen 2/1
Waikato 3 Taranaki 2
Hanna Seifert bt Carol Chard 2/1, Sarah Bradley bt Holly Winter 6/5, Charlotte Willson bt Celeste McLean 6/5, Fai Tongdethsri lost to Rochelle Keegan 4/3, Michelle Archer lost to Vanessa Bouvet 4/2
Northland 4 Tasman 1
Sjanna Bonnigton bt Emily Stenhouse 4/2, Sam Dangen lost to Lesley Baxter 1down, Kylie Jacoby bt Emily Greenhough 3/1, Jo Taylor bt Tracy Bary 3/2, Jodi McCalister bt Jean Gibson 4/3
Wellington 3 Manawatu/Wanganui 2
Julianne Alvarez bt Emma Clayton 5/4, Te Rongopai Clay bt Amber Rose Thompson-Newth 4/2, Barbara Parreno lost to Brydie Hodge 2/1, Lucy Davis bt Stephanie Hyatt 1up, Alanah Braybrook lost to Kelly Nicholas 6/5
Bay of Plenty 3 Southland 2
Zoe Brake lost to Robyn Pullar 2/1, Grace Senior lost to Angela Gerken 1down, Tyla Kingi bt Olivia Frost 1up, Susan Lines bt Kerry Mariu 7/6, Alanna Campbell bt Bronwyn O'Brien 8/6
Bye: Auckland, North Harbour
Round Two Scores
North Harbour 4 Tasman 1
Kristen Farrell lost to Emily Stenhouse 3/2, Lita Guo bt Lesley Baxter 5/3, Sai Ma bt Emily Greenhough 3/1, Julitta Lam bt Tracy Bary 6/5, Jessica Murray bt Jean Gibson 6/5
Wellington 4 Northland 1
Julianne Alvarez bt Sjanna Bonnigton 8/6, Te Rongopai Clay bt Sam Dangen 1up, Barbara Parreno lost to Kylie Jacoby 1down, Lucy Davis bt Jo Taylor 6/5, Alanah Braybrook bt Jodi McCalister 2/1
Man/Wanganui 4 1/2 Southland 1/2
Emma Clayton halved with Robyn Pullar, Amber-Rose Thompson-Newth bt Angela Gerken 2/1, Brydie Hodge bt Olivia Frost 2/1, Stephanie Hyatt bt Kerry Mariu 2up, Kelly Nicholas bt Bronwyn O'Brien 6/5
Auckland 4 1/2 Aorangi 1/2
Wenyung Keh halved with Catherine Bell, Munchin Keh bt Catherine Knight 4/3, Joanna Kim bt Ginny Bolderston 6/5, Brittney Dryland bt Nicole Nathan 4/2, Larissa Eruera bt Heather Oldfield
Hawkes Bay 3 Otago 2
Kate Chadwick bt Laura Hoskin 1up, Jaimie McIvor lost to Jo Hicks-Beach 6/4, Anglea Jones bt Liz McRae 7/5, Tessa McDonald bt Dale Dagg 3/2, Lucy Owen lost to Susan Greig 6/5
Canterbury 3 Taranaki 2
Sylvie Williams bt Carol Chard 3/2, Elisha Crosbie lost to Holly Winter 2/1, Jess Guenzerodt bt Celeste McLean 4/2, Zhantel Weekes los to Rochelle Keegan 6/5, Kate Turner bt Vanessa Bouvet 4/2
Bye: Waikato, Bay of Plenty
Division One Leaderboard:
Team Individual Points Team (*had the bye)
2.0, 7.0, Canterbury
1.0, 6.0, Otago
1.0, 4.5, Auckland*
1.0, 4.0, Hawkes Bay
1.0, 3.0, Waikato
0.0, 4.0, Taranaki
0.0, 1.5, Aorangi
Division Two Leaderboard:
Team Individual Points Team (*had the bye)
2.0, 7.0, Wellington
1.0, 6.5, Manawatu / Wanagnui
1.0, 5.0, Northland
1.0, 4.0, North Harbour*
1.0, 3.0, Bay of Plenty
0.0, 2.5, Southland
0.0, 2.0, Tasman