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Sturehed leads in Kuwait

Swede finished one off course record with 63 on day one

Gulf News

Kuwait City: Henric Sturehed fired a flawless seven-under 63 to grab an early lead after the opening round of the Sahara Kuwait Golf Championship on Monday.

The 27-year-old Mena Tour rookie from Sweden notched up four birdies on the front nine and three coming home to move top of the leaderboard, one clear of English duo Stuart Archibald and Luke Joy, Scotland’s Daniel Hendry and Luke Trocado of South Africa.

“The course is playing nice and there are plenty of scoring opportunities out there if you can hit the fairways in regulation,” said Sturehed, who fell just one shy of the course record, jointly held by defending champion Joe Heraty and Chile’s Matias Calderon.

“I struck the ball very well off the tee and holed some good putts when I needed to and that was the key to going low today,” he added.

England’s Archibald, who also went bogey-free on the opening day, was equally pleased.

“I played some lovely golf, missed just one green which means I had 17 chances to pick up a shot,” he said. “I struggled a bit to get the pace of the greens on the front nine as I had arrived just in time for my tee time, but found the touch as the round wore on and didn’t miss any greens coming home,”

Perennial contender Joy produced one of the highlights of the day, hitting his 3-iron approach from 228 yards to within 15 feet and holing the ensuing long putt for an eagle en route to a tidy 64.

England’s Todd Clements led the amateur division after opening with a 66 one stroke clear of Switzerland’s Michael Harradine, who carded a bogey-free round, as Saudi Arabia’s Othman Al Mulla settled for a 75.