Louis Oosthuizen/Getty Images
Louis Oosthuizen and Adam Scott lead the World Golf Championship, HSBC Champions event at Mission Hills, China, with opening rounds of -7 under par, 65, in the calm and excellent low scoring conditions. Both players finished with Eagles on their last hole, the par 5 ninth.
Louis said he did not think that there was a low score to be had;
“I don’t think I saw a really low number out there but once you look at the leaderboard and see the guys are firing it up, all of a sudden you started seeing birdies. I played well, I made five birdies on the par fives, and that got the round going, and then I made two more birdies. I hit a few bad iron shots, but made good up and downs for pars and just glad to have a bogey-free round. I’m always happy with that. There are three rounds left and a lot of golf to be played. The main key is to try to put myself in a spot to win it on Sunday. If I can keep doing what I’m doing on the par fives and hitting fairways, you’ve got a good chance.”
Adam Scott, he of the long putter, which could be banned shortly, is seeking a win before the ban arrives. Adam, the eight-time European Tour winner said he was having a solid day, that turned into a good day;
“ It was a solid day that all of a sudden turned into a really good day. I hit a lot of good shots, and they ended up finishing close on the last couple holes and I took advantage of that. With five par fives, it sets up well for my game, and the plan is to just take advantage of the fives and hopefully hang in there with the leaders all week.”
Phil Mickleson, who also managed to eagled the ninth, says his game feels really good. Phil joined the group at -6 under par, with his round of 66;
”My game feels really good, It’s gotten better each week since the PGA Championship and hopefully I can carry on. I certainly feel confident that I will be able to.”
Bubba Watson, Peter Hanson and Shane Lowry are the other players who completed their opening rounds in 66. It certainly looked like Shane was going to be the clubhouse leader after he bounded into a clear lead when he holed a six footer for birdie at the 15th and gained another shot from ten feet at the 16th. Unfortunately Shane failed to save par from the green-side bunker on seventeen, and then also hit it into the sand on the last, finishing with two bogeys for his 66.
Shane said he was disappointed to finish like that, but he was happy with his position;
“ I’m happy with six under and I’m in a good position with three days to go. Obviously was very disappointed bogeying the last two, I felt like I had the ball on a string all day and felt like it came very easy to me today. Just to bogey those last two was disappointing but six under is a good score out there, and I’m looking forward to the next few days.”
Luke Donald has made a good start to this tournament, a -4 under par 68, a good solid start, Luke has a good record in the WGC, and could figure in this one.