Adam Scott fancied to mount strong challenge at Pebble Beach

08 February, 2019, 13:36 | Author: Brenda Erickson
  • Team USA’s Phil Mickelson during the Singles

"It was great out there today and it's nice to get off to a good start", said Gay, who has won four times on the PGA Tour, but not since the 2013 Humana Challenge.

A poor three-putt bogey from 21 feet at the 18th took some of the gloss off his day but he was still just three shots behind early leader Brian Gay, who shot a seven-under 64 at Monterey Peninsula where four-time victor Phil Mickelson carded a 65 and Dustin Johnson and Jordan Spieth opened with 66s. "I'm not going to chase them as hard as I tried to maybe force or chase them previous year because you can get hurt doing that". He also shot 69 at Pebble, and don't say I didn't try and give him to you at 50-1 before the tournament started!

Other contenders - Phil Mickelson (-6), Jason Day (-6), Dustin Johnson (-5), Jordan Spieth (-5): All four of these players unsurprisingly started on the easiest course, Monterey Peninsula.

"So, if I just think about it that way, it kind of certainly makes me a little happier, frees me up a bit".

"I like this place, I like these courses", he said. They are tied for ninth with Branden Grace of South Africa and Nate Lashley, who totaled 5-under 67 at Pebble, and Scott Stallings, Fabian Gomez of Mexico and Johnson Wagner, who posted 5-under 67s at Spyglass Hill.

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A friendly, needling inquisitor also reminded Mickelson that the soft, wet nature of the course made fairways play wider than they typically do at the Monterey Peninsula.

The former world number one triumphed 11 times on the PGA Tour before turning 24 but is coming off the first disappointing year of his career.

"I might not have as much (flexibility) compared to the other Tour players but I do what I can with what I have".

Meanwhile, Aaron Baddeley was next best of the Australians with a three-under-par 69 at the hard Spyglass Hill leaving him just four shots off the pace.

Spieth was even at the turn but ran in five birdies coming home. Romo was on the range at Pebble Beach with a Nike Method 001 putter from Tiger Woods and a 60-degree Titleist Vokey SM7 lob wedge from Jordan Spieth. Articles appear on euronews.com for a limited time.

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