Norway's Suzann Pettersen carded a 6-under 66 Thursday to lead the women's Australian Open by a shot after the first round at the Victoria Golf Club.
Pettersen, winner of last year's Evian Championships, had nine birdies and three bogeys, holding off a series of challengers led by Marion Ricordeau of France.
Ricordeau, who had eight birdies, a bogey and double bogey, briefly drew level with Pettersen before finishing among a group of four players with rounds of 67.
World No.4 Lydia Ko of New Zealand was among a larger group at 4-under after a mixed opening round. Ko was one under after her opening nine but came home with five birdies and two bogeys, including birdies at her last two holes.