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Big names struggle at Dutch Open

Westwood and McIlroy both level par after first round as bad weather saturates the course

British  Rory McIlroy in action during the Pro-AM KLM Open
Image Credit: AFP
British Rory McIlroy in action during the Pro-AM KLM Open on September 7, 2011 in Hilversum.
Gulf News

Hilversum, Netherlands: World numbers two and four, Lee Westwood and Rory McIlroy, ended a trying Dutch Open first round five shots off the lead yesterday.

The pair were made to wait until Thursday evening just to play eight holes after bad weather and an overnight vandal attack on the greens caused severe disruption.

Both birdied the last to finish off rounds of 70, leaving them five strokes adrift of leaders Simon Dyson of Britain and Germany's Marcel Siem.

Westwood and McIlroy then had just 40 minutes break before starting their second rounds.

Only just playable

After battling with a saturated course, Westwood reckoned conditions had only just been playable.

"When you're dropping a ball because it has plugged and it then plugs again, it's borderline," the Englishman said. "I feel sorry for the organisers."

McIlroy said the testing conditions were not all he had to think about.

"It was a struggle to get yourself mentally prepared but considering the way I played I have to be happy with level-par," McIlroy said.

"I'm going to hit a few balls before going out again to see if I can do better."

Dyson, looking for a third win in the event in six years, maintained his one-shot overnight lead with Siem after both hit 65s on Thursday.