Thursday, January 26, 2017

Dredge leads with a 64 in Qatar Masters

Bradley Dredge took advantage of the unusually calm conditions at Doha Golf Club, posting an eight-under-par opening round of 64 to lead the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters by one shot. 
The Welshman has finished runner up seven times since claiming his second European Tour title in 2006, and he shared fourth place in Qatar 12 months ago.   
He is in contention once again after firing eight birdies, including a run of five in seven holes immediately after the turn, to edge clear of Finland’s Mikko Korhonen, who, like Dredge, also returned a bogey-free scorecard, signing for a round of 65. 
Former US Open champion Graeme McDowell is one shot further back on six under par after a blistering start to his 2017 European Tour campaign. Starting on the tenth tee, the Northern Irishman opened with three consecutive birdies and picked up three more shots over the next six holes to reach the turn in just 30 shots.
He added one more birdie on the second before dropping his only shot of the day on the sixth for a round of 66. 
McDowell is joined on that mark by Thailand’s Kiradech Aphibarnrat, who shared fourth place in last week’s Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship, and Qualifying School winner Nathan Kimsey. Two former champions, Ernie Els and Thomas Bjørn, are three shots back after opening rounds of 68. 
Aberdonian Richie Ramsay is the leading Scot with a four-under 68 which has him joint 14th, a shot ahead of Marc Warren.
Former tournament winner Paul Lawrie had what looked like a satisfactory two-under 70 but apparently he had only 22 putts which means he took a lot of shots to get to the greens.
David Drysdale was a third Scot to return a sub-par round, a 71, a shot ahead of Scott Jamieson.
Duncan Stewart from Grantown-on-Spey and Aberdeen-born Clarke Lutton had 74s, Stephen Gallacher a disappointing 75 and Scott Henry a 79.
Player Quotes
Bradley Dredge: "I’m delighted with the score today. I’m a bit surprised, I thought I was going to hit the ball a bit better off the tee than I did, but I hit a few more fairways. I putted really well, and at the end of the day, I was just compiling a score, and 64 was a good number out there."
 "I have a good history here. I'm not quite comfortable on the greens. It seems as though it's slightly less grain at the moment on the greens. So for me, the lines were a little bit clearer today. I'm sure you could ask me tomorrow and I'd say I couldn't see them."

Mikko Korhonen
"I hit it pretty solid off the tee, and my irons as well. I didn't make too many mistakes. I hit it in the rough a couple of times, and it's not easy, I'd have to say. It's more difficult than past years.

"I made a few putts - a few long ones – and I didn't miss any short ones. That's basically it. It was definitely the calmest day I've seen. It was scorable."

Graeme McDowell“It was great to get off to a fast start right out of the gates, birdieing the first three holes, and that set the tone for the day. I really felt like I gave myself a lot of chances.”
   “We had incredibly benign conditions for Doha. You don't typically get the weather this calm, and it was nice to take advantage of it this morning. I hit most of fairways, hit some really nice iron shots and made some putts.

“To go out and obviously post a low one this morning was nice to start the proceedings. I’m very happy with that round this morning. I'd certainly have taken six-under par and stayed at home this morning, no problems.”
Round One scores
par 72
 64 B Dredge (Wal)
 65 M Korhonen (Fin)
 66 G McDowell  (NIr) , N Kimsey (Eng) , K Aphibarnrat (Tha)
 67 A Knappe (Ger) , T Detry  (Bel) , J Lagergren (Swe) , N Elvira  (Esp) , P Dunne (Ire) , R Jacquelin (Fra) , J Van Zyl (SAf) , S Dyson  (Eng)
 68 S Walker (Eng) , C Shinkwin (Eng) , C Hanson (Eng) , D Brooks (Eng) , A Sullivan (Eng) , A Wall (Eng) , G Bourdy (Fra) , E Els (SAf) , T Bjørn (Den) , D Im (USA) , A Noren  (Swe) , R Ramsay  (Sco) , A Karlsson  (Swe) , T Aiken (SAf) , G Storm  (Eng)
69 T Jaidee (Tha) , C Wood  (Eng) , R Karlberg  (Swe) , J Wang (SKor) , J Campillo (Esp) , P Larrazábal (Esp) , L Haotong (Chn) , A Levy (Fra) , M Lorenzo-Vera  (Fra) , A Björk (Swe) , S Lee (SKor) , R Gonzalez (Arg) , S Hend (Aus) , L Bjerregaard  (Den) , J Stalter (Fra) , G Havret  (Fra) , M Warren (Sco)
70 F Aguilar (Chi) , M Manassero (Ita) , N Colsaerts  (Bel) , M Kaymer (Ger) , P Lawrie (Sco) , R Bland (Eng) , P Edberg (Swe) , P Angles  (Spn) , M Kieffer (Ger) , P Hanson (Swe) , R Langasque  (Fra) , R Cabrera Bello (Spn) , T Olesen (Den) , S Chawrasia (Ind) , O Fisher  (Eng) , R Karlsson (Swe) , B Wiesberger  (Aut) , B Hebert  (Fra) , D Burmester (SAf)
71 T Immelman  (SAf) , A Cañizares  (Spn) , J Smith (Eng) , R Paratore (Ita) , A Otaegui  (Spn) , J Quesne  (Fra) , D Drysdale (Sco) , R Gouveia (Por) , J Luiten (Ned) , D Frittelli (SAf) , M Pavon (Fra) , M Siem  (Ger) , J Carlsson (Swe) , P Peterson (USA) , R Wattel  (Fra) , D Howell (Eng) , N Bertasio (Ita) , Y El Hassani (Mor) , S Tiley (Eng) , D Lingmerth (Swe)
72 L Jensen (Den) , J Scrivener (Aus) , M Armitage (Eng) , E De La Riva  (Spn) , J Fahrbring (Swe) , D Fichardt (SAf) , D Lipsky (USA) , D Perrier (Fra) , S Gros (Fra) , R Rock (Eng) , R Fox (NZ) , S Jamieson  (Sco)
73 N Fasth (Swe) , H Porteous (SAf) , T Fleetwood  (Eng) , P Waring  (Eng) , F Zanotti (Par) , G Stal  (Fra) , L Slattery (Eng) , M Carlsson  (Swe) , B Ritthammer (Ger)
74 G Coetzee (SAf) , M Southgate  (Eng) , S Brazel (Aus) , M Ilonen  (Fin) , D Stewart (Sco) , J Walters (SAf) , C Lutton (Sco) , C Paisley  (Eng) , K Broberg (Swe)
 75 S Gallacher (Sco) , J Olazábal (Esp) , J Lima  (Por)
 76 A Quiros  (Spn) , W Ormsby (Aus) , A Al Kaabi  (Qat) (am)
 77 N Holman  (Aus) , P Verlaar Junior (Ned)  (am)
 78 E Molinari  (Ita)
 79 S Henry  (Sco)
 82 P Dedek  (Cze)
 84 A Al Shahrani (Qat)  (am)




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