Ladies European Tour
Jul 10th, 2022
Ciganda still in control at Estrella Damm Ladies Open
Spaniard takes a four shot lead into the final round
Photography: Tristan Jones/LET
Trying to complete a wire-to-wire victory, the 2019 tournament champion holds a four-stroke lead over Swedish pair Maja Stark and Sofie Bringner heading into the final round at Club de Golf Terramar in Sitges.
The 34-year-old from Pamplona started strongly with a birdie on the first hole and carded a further three consecutive birdies from the sixth hole for a flawless outward nine of four-under-par 33. She came home in level par 35 with nine steady pars and said: “I hit nine greens on the back and it would have been nice to have made a couple of birdies. In the end, there were no bogeys on the card again, so I’m happy. I played solidly. On 16, a par-5, I had a 6-iron in my hand and I didn’t make a birdie, but still, it was good golfing. I think I hit 16 greens today.”
Trailing Ciganda are Bringner - who shot the tournament-low round of eight-under-par 64 on day three - and Stark, the LET Race to Costa del Sol leader who overturned a seven shot deficit to win the tournament nine months ago and is fresh off a win at the Amundi German Masters last weekend.
Ciganda said that she could not take her foot off the gas and continued: “I think Maja Stark is a great competitor and she scored five-under in the last seven holes today, so I don’t think anything is enough. Playing golf, you have to be very humble and keep playing well. I want to try and win the day tomorrow.”
Stark, who has won twice on the LET already this season, went out in level par 37 but turned up the heat with three birdies and an eagle in her last seven holes to come back in 30.
The 22-year-old said: “During the warm-up, it didn’t feel good at all. I felt like I missed every putt and didn’t hit a single good shot and I thought it was going to be a struggle today – and it was – in the beginning. I finally started making some putts and got some confidence again.”
Bringner – Saturday’s big mover - also takes momentum into Sunday having posted nine birdies and just one bogey in the third round.
The 24-year-old said: “It was a lovely day out there today and my personal best round as well. It was so fun to play today. I just focused on trying to climb the leader board and it felt good all the way. I made a bogey on 15 but apart from that, it was good all day.”
Magdalena Simmermacher from Argentina, who carded a 68, sits in fourth place, followed by Laura Beveridge of Scotland in fifth on ten-under-par.
Sweden’s Jessica Karlsson and Spain’s Nuria Iturrioz are tied for sixth on eight-under-par, with a further five players tied for eighth place on seven-under-par.