Sergio Garcia Just Two Off The Lead in China- By Dorian Netolicky on April 21, 2011 22:48 GMT
Sergio Garcia looked very much like the man of old shooting 6-under 66 in the first round at the Volvo China Open to trail Han Chang-won by two shots.
It was a bogey free round for the Spaniard in what was easily his best round of the season and now he’ll have to put up a solid second round to stay close and possibly shake the inconsistency that has derailed his game over the past few years.
Garcia just hasn’t been that good of late and he’s going to have to exorcise some weekend demons as he’s failed to break 70 in his last four weekend rounds and has shot 75 three times.
A good sign for Garcia was his accuracy off the tee on Thursday propelling him to birdies on all four of the par-5’s at the Luxehills International Country Club.
Defending champion YE Yang got off to a good start in round one firing a 4-under 68 sitting four off the lead. Yang hit a loose iron on the 5th to make bogey on the par-4 and only birdied two of four par-5’s on the day. Needless to say, this round could have been a lot better.
If the 2009 PGA Champion can turn things up just slightly, he should contend in the coming days and possibly hold the China Open trophy for the second year in a row.
Like Garcia, Yang hasn’t played his best golf of late breaking 70 only once on the European Tour this season.
Dane Soren Kjeldsen is just a shot back of Han after getting off to a blazing start, birdieing his first three holes, and going on to make 7 birdies and not a single bogey on Thursday.
Kjeldsen has three career European Tour win and wouldn’t normally be a headliner, but the Chinese field is void of names, and he’s really one of the more experienced players in the field.
However, he hasn’t been very good in 2011 and there’s really no telling if he’s got four consistent rounds in him this week. Kjeldsen is coming off his best finish of the season, a 13th in Malaysia, but failed to get in the top-50 in the four events previous.
Forget your opponents; always play against par - Sam Snead