Lydia Ko 8 shots back at US Open after rough opening round

Source: 1News

Lydia Ko has gotten off to a rough start at the US Women's Open in North Carolina, posting a one-over 72 to sit in a tie for 47th after the opening round.

Ko started the day with a bogey on the opening hole and dropped another shot at the par-four seventh with second bogey.

However she regained her composure with birdies on the eighth and 10th to get back to even and looked as though she'd stay that way for the rest of the round until a late bogey on the 15th pushed her back one stroke.

Ko entered the tournament saying she was at the "happiest point of her life" after rediscovering her form last year, adding the recent successes of fellow Kiwi golfers Steven Alker and Ryan Fox had also inspired her.

"I saw that Steve won last week, and I was watching Foxy's playoff in the dining hall, moving my chair to get a better view, and he played amazing," she said.

"He came second I think a few weeks ago, so it's really cool to see the New Zealand flag being shown out there."

Ko will need a strong second round to rein in the leaders of the major with American Mina Harigae eight shots ahead after carding a seven-under 64 on Friday.

Swedish amateur Ingrid Lindblad also turned heads with her first round, as she sits just one shot back from Harigae in sole possession of second with a six-under 65 - the lowest score ever by an amateur at the tournament.

Fellow Kiwi Julianne Alvarez sits two shots behind Ko back in a tie for 86th at three-over.