Precision putting helps Poulter set pace at Miyazaki
Friday 16 November 2007
Ian Poulter produced a near flawless performance to tie for the lead after the opening round at the Dunlop Phoenix tournament in Miyazaki, Japan, yesterday.
The Englishman, part of a strong international contingent, carded five birdies for a five-under-par 65 in benign conditions. He joined Japan's Muto Toshinori and the South Korean Kim Kyung Tae, one stroke ahead of the Australian Chris Campbell and Spaniard Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano.
The defending champion, Padraig Harrington, eagled his first hole, the par-four 10th, but could not take full advantage of his start, shooting a two-under 68. "Starting with an eagle, I felt I could have done better," he said. "At times I was trying a little too hard, trying to birdie every hole. I feel good about my game. I just need to stay a little more patient than today. It was a little erratic."
Poulter was delighted not just with his score, but also the quality of his game. "I'll take five under with no bogeys around this place. It's pretty easy to make bogeys around here," he said. "I missed two greens in regulation, both of which were 25-foot bunker shots, and I up-and-downed both of them."
Poulter was fooled more than once by the pace of the greens. "They are sneakily quick," he said. "That nearly caught me out twice today. I holed some really good six-to-eight feet recovery putts when I rolled the first one past."
At the Hong Kong Open, Garry Houston paid tribute to the Ryder Cup winner Thomas Bjorn for inspiring his seven-under-par 63 opening round.
"I played with Thomas Bjorn on Tuesday in practice and he gave me a couple of tips. I took it out there today so I should really thank Thomas for that," said Houston, who held a one-stroke lead over the Swedes Robert Karlsson and Fredrik Andersson Hed.
The Independent's live blog of today's Premier League action
Latest in Sport
World Masters Athletics Championships: Meet the 95-year-olds still picking up medals
Don't mess with me, Diego Costa warns Manchester City ahead of Chelsea clash
Colombian women's cycling team kit that makes wearer appear naked is branded 'unacceptable' by UCI president
West Ham vs Liverpool match report: Reds are caught cold by hot Hammers
Aston Villa vs Arsenal team news: Alexis Sanchez incorrectly named in starting line-up as Alex Oxlade-Chamerlain called up to start
- 1 Scottish referendum: So how about the English now being given a chance to split from England?
- 2 Stamford Hill council removes 'unacceptable' posters telling women which side of the road to walk down
- 3 Kim Kardashian 'nude pictures' leaked on 4chan weeks after Jennifer Lawrence 'The Fappening' scandal
- 4 Matthew Miller: American sentenced to hard labour in North Korea 'wanted to be Snowden II'
- 5 Iranian blogger found guilty of insulting Prophet Mohammad on Facebook sentenced to death
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
Scottish referendum results: Cross-party consensus collapses amid Tory-Labour spat on the 'English question'
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Russia freezes Ukraine into submission: Kiev admits country doesn't have enough fuel for winter
Archbishop of Canterbury admits doubts about existence of God
Portuguese academic says British are 'filthy, violent and drunk'