Fraser MacLachlan and Hiroki Miya have enjoyed opening rounds of five-under (66) to lead the mens New Zealand Stroke Play Championship while Juliana Hung stamped her authority at the Paraparaumu Beach Golf Club to lead the womens field by two shots at six-under.

The Southerners hold a deserving one-shot lead overnight with MacLachlans eagle two the highlight after chipping in from greenside on the sixth hole, boosting him into contention.

"It feels pretty good to hit it straight for once, but the eagle was certainly a bonus. Dad, who was on the bag said, Tiger would chip this one in, which may have spurred me on a bit," laughed MacLachlan.

His clinical display today comes as no surprise for the laid-back Millbrook member after his recent success in qualifying for the New Zealand Open, coupled with living in Wellington growing up.

Canterburys Hiroki Miya also found a much-needed boost after being even par at the halfway mark before flicking the switch to record five birdies in his back nine of just 31.

The 17-year-old is coming off a great run of form after winning on the international stage at the Faldo Series in Vietnam earlier this month, which proves his consistency.

"Ive never been in this position at an event like this, but I have also been playing really well over the last couple of months, so hopefully I can keep it up throughout the week," said Miya.

Although these two hold an overnight lead, they wont sleep as easy in the knowledge that there is a handful of locals lingering just one shot behind.

Wellingtons Kerry Mountcastle, Adam Church and Frank Borren have cashed in on their home advantage with very solid rounds of four-under to pose a huge threat on a course they know so well. They are joined by North Harbours James Hydes who enjoyed a run of five birdies in six holes.

Defending champion Mark Hutson ended a solid performance at two-under par and tied 12th which keeps his hopes alive, while tournament favourite Daniel Hillier finished a further shot back after an inconsistent round that included two double-bogeys. With the shortened format, these two will have to make a move tomorrow to catch the leaders.


Juliana Hung was the best of the bunch with her impressive round of six-under, 68 (par 74) which gives her a two-shot lead over the exciting chasing pack of Carmen Lim and Brittney Dryland.

With five birdies to her name heading into the final stretch, Hung finished things off in style with a perfect eagle on the 17th to leave the field behind.

"Today my short game was really good and played pretty solid golf which helped with a low score," smiled Hung.

"I hit my 4-wood to five feet which was exciting and made the putt for eagle.

It doesnt feel any different and I try not to think about it [the lead] and after going to Singapore for the Womens Amateur Asia-Pacific and the Faldo Series in Vietnam, they were so cool and I learnt so much which is helping me get even better."

There is plenty of talent not far behind with Caitlin Maurice, Miree Jung and Rose Zheng within striking distance. However, with the shortened format they may all run out of time if Hung continues to produce anything close to her performance today.

- This story has been automatically published using a media release from Golf NZ