Rory McIlroy and Shane Lowery share the first round lead in the season ending DP World Tour Championship in Dubai.
Rory and Shane both carded first rounds of -6 under par 66 to sit on top of the DP World Tour Championship leaderboard on the Earth Course at Jumeirah Golf Estates.
Rory already has The Race to Dubai title in his pocket, but has stated he will contest here, he wants to win;
“It was a great way to start, you never expect to start like that, but I’ve been hitting the ball well for the last couple of weeks that I’ve been practicing and it was just a matter of trying to take that good range play on to the course, and I was able to do that today, which I’m really happy about.”
“I feel like it really suits my style of play. I can be aggressive with the driver, and that can set me up to hit shorter irons into greens and obviously give myself a lot of birdie opportunities like I did today.
“I didn’t feel like I took as many of them as I could have but it still added up to six under and I’m very happy with that.”
Shane proved he is still in good form, he birdied four of the last six holes, but said he was thinking about his poor final round last Sunday in Turkey;
“The whole day Sunday and the flight down here you’re thinking about it, it’s one of those things. But I gave myself a chance to win last week. If I can give myself a chance to win again this week, maybe I’ll do it.”
“I have been playing well for most of the year. I’ve been very consistent. I’ve been shooting some great scores, making a lot of birdies and I did that today again.”
Richie Ramsay and Thorbjørn Olesen are a shot off the pace on -5 under par under, with defending champion Henrik Stenson another stroke back sharing fifth place with Emiliano Grillo.
Richie was also happy with his opening round;
“I’m really happy. Obviously it was a great start, three birdies on the spin, and then played lovely in the middle, had a lot of chances but just didn’t take a few.”
“But most important was I stayed patient, stayed with it. I kept on hitting good shots and then took a couple of chances on 14 and 15 and then finished off pretty solid coming down the stretch.”
“I played great in the middle part of the season. I know the game is there, just a matter of staying out of my own way and committing to it.”
Thorbjorn has been in contention a few times this season, and won the ISPS Handa Perth International;
“It feels like a second home golf course for me really.”
“I played lovely, hit a lot of fairways and a lot of greens. Hit a few really close, and the putter was working nicely. It was a really solid day.”
“When you’re seven under going to 16, and you know you have 18 which is a possible birdie chance, also, of course it’s a little bit disappointing, but I took a chance and it didn’t work out very well.”
“I felt like it was going so well and I felt like I could pull it off – that’s what happens in golf.”