Friday, 19 March 2010
U.S. Open - Preview Day 1  (Getty Images)
U.S. Open - Preview Day 1 (Getty Images)

Sweden’s Peter Hanson surged into a tie for the lead in The US Open Championship at Bethpage Black following a fine start to his delayed first round.

Hanson, who did not make it on to the course on Thursday due to the early abandonment of play, started at the tenth and picked up birdies on the 13th, 16th and 17th to reach the turn in three under.

And another birdie at the par four first, his tenth hole, took Hanson level with Canada’s Mike Weir at the top of the leaderboard.

Colombia’s European Tour member Camilo Villegas was a shot behind on three under after 11 holes of his opening round, one clear of Americans Sean O’Hair and Kenny Perry.

There then followed a glut of players at one under, including England’s Ross Fisher, Denmark’s Soren Hansen and American world number two Phil Mickelson.

Also on one under was Northern Ireland’s Graeme McDowell, who completed his first round earlier in the day.

Coming off a final round 63 in the St Jude Classic in Memphis last Sunday, the 29 year old birdied the 17th, his eighth hole, and followed suit at the par four second and par five fourth to move into the outright lead on two under.

A bogey at the par four sixth saw McDowell slip back to one under but that was still enough to hand him the clubhouse lead alongside American amateur Drew Weaver.

Afterwards, McDowell said: “I'm happy with my round. Obviously my seven holes yesterday morning were key.

“I was happy to hang in there and give myself a chance to come out this morning and shoot under par.

“I've got a lot of work to do. There’s three rounds coming up, very important rounds. And there's definitely some areas of my game that I can work on.

“I've got to stay in the present, keep doing what I'm doing all weekend and realise it's going to be a tough slog.”

Joint overnight leader Johan Edfors was one of a host of players on level par after he fought back strongly from bogeys on his opening two holes today.

A bogey at the 17th ensured he finished with a 70, the same score as Englishman Ian Poulter, who described his effort as “a good solid start.”

Poulter’s fellow countryman Justin Rose was also on level par after ten holes of his first round, while Spain’s Sergio Garcia stood one over after 11, putting him alongside Italian Francesco Molinari, who carded a 71.

England’s Lee Westwood was a shot further back after completing his opening round in 72 strokes, while Henrik Stenson, Geoff Ogilvy, Tim Clark and Andres Romero were among the other European Tour members in contention on three over.

Defending champion and world number one Tiger Woods suffered a disappointing finish to his round, dropping four shots in his final four holes for a total of 74.

Masters Tournament champion Angel Cabrera and three-time Major winner Padraig Harrington were grouped with Woods and ended their first round on four over and six over respectively.

The United States Golf Association are hoping to get the second round under way at 4pm (9pm BST) as they bid to get back on track after yesterday’s delays.

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