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Appleby Takes One Shot Lead Over Kuchar at the Sony

Stuart Appleby shot a clean 6-under par 64 to take a one shot lead over 2010 money leader Matt Kuchar at the Sony Open in Hawaii.

Appleby looks to get his first win early this season after getting his only win of 2010 at the late season McGladrey Classic.

The Aussie Tour veteran struggled last week at the season opening Hyundai Tournament of Champions where he was only 1-under on the weekend and limped to a 30thplace finish.

It seems Appleby may not quite have his game fully in order to start the season, but his opening round on Friday could be signs that he’s been able to work out some kinks.

He joins Kuchar as the betting favourite at (13-2).

Kuchar, meanwhile, shot a solid 65 on Friday where he made six birdies while dropping just a single shot.  Kuchar should be a solid bet all season as he’s now ascended to star status after a career year in 2010.

The ‘Kuch’ finished the season on an unbelievable streak of consistency posting 11 straight top-25 finishes en route to $4.9-million in earnings and the Tour money title.

To lean towards Kuchar over Appleby would be totally understandable.  Kuchar played lights out all season long in 2010, while his Aussie counterpart was his usual streaky self.  One just doesn’t know which Stuart Appleby is going to show up week to week, round to round.

Englishman Justin Rose is third on the betting board heading to the second round. 

Rose matched Kuchar with a 65 in round one and he’s coming off his best PGA Tour season. 

The man born in Johannesburg, South Africa won twice in the span of a month last season taking down his first two PGA titles at the Memorial and AT&T National.

Rose seems to also be a better hope for victory over Appleby and could conceivably be the co-favourite.  However, the books don’t see it that way putting Rose at (8-1) going to Saturday.

From the land of long odds comes 2010 Player of the Year Jim Furyk who was stagnant out of the gate managing just an even par 70 in the opening round.


A golf course is nothing but a pool room moved outdoors  - Frank Butler

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