Good putts at the right time have put Richard Green into a tie for fourth after Round 1 of the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship at PGA Frisco in Texas.
Green was the only member of the five-strong Australian contingent to better par on day one, his round of 4-under 68 putting him four strokes back of Padraig Harrington (64) who is two strokes clear of Japan’s Katsumasa Miyamoto (66).
A birdie at the par-5 opening hole was a positive first step for Green, the Victorian adding birdies at three, five and seven to make the turn in 3-under par.
His only misstep all day was a bogey at the par-3 fourth but he rebounded immediately to maintain that early momentum.
“That was kind of the key to getting some momentum back going early,” said Green, a two-time winner on the European Legends Tour in 2022.
“Then from the rest of the nine there, nice solid birdie on seven, got me going again.
“I actually was able to hit some really good putts at the right time there. Other than that, hitting was pretty good, gave myself a chance to knock ‘em in.
“You’ve got to get a little bit fortunate to hole putts at times, so I’ll take them.”
Kiwi Steven Alker is in a share of 18th position with a round of 2-under 70, Mark Hensby and David McKenzie ending Round 1 even with the card.
At the PGA TOUR’s Charles Schwab Challenge, both Min Woo Lee and Cam Davis continued on their good form from the PGA Championship in Round 1 at Colonial Country Club.
Playing with new cult hero Michael Block, Lee (67) played the back nine in 3-under to sit in a tie for seventh, Davis (68) one shot back following a round of 16 pars and birdies at one and 12.
Lee and New Zealand’s Ryan Fox are playing their first event since receiving Special Temporary Membership of the PGA TOUR, Fox also enjoying a strong start to be level with Lee at 3-under and five shots back of Englishman Harry Hall (62).
Prolific winners on the ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australia, Jarryd Felton and Dimi Papadatos are both in a good position on the Challenge Tour and Korn Ferry Tour respectively.
Felton (71) is four strokes off the lead held by American Julian Suri (67) at the Copenhagen Challenge in Denmark, Papadatos (67) also four shots from the lead and in a tie foe 21st after Round 1 of the Visit Knoxville Open.
At the Bank of Hope LPGA Match Play in Las Vegas, Karis Davidson and Sarah Kemp both suffered defeats in the second round of round robin matches.
A winner on day one, Davidson went down to Mina Harigae 2 down while Kemp finished on the wrong side of the ledger for the second straight day, losing narrowly 2&1 to Korea’s Sei Young Kim.
Davidson will face undefeated Thai, Pajaree Anannarukarn, in Round 3, likely needing to win to advance to the knockout phase of the tournament.