Thursday, 25 February 2016
Day 1 Highlights - ISPS HANDA Perth International

Peter Uihlein put his recent injury troubles behind him to take a one-shot lead on day one of the ISPS HANDA Perth International.

The American missed consecutive cuts on the Desert Swing before withdrawing from the Omega Dubai Desert Classic with a wrist problem, but he returned to action in Malaysia last week and secured a top ten finish.

The 26 year old picked up where he left off at Lake Karrinyup Country Club, firing a seven under par 65 to take a one-shot advantage over Romain Wattel and Shiv Kapur.

Wattel and Kapur have had struggles of their own recently, the former missing all three cuts in the Gulf States and the latter losing his playing privileges last season, but they showed no signs of any problems as they set the target in the morning before Uihlein leapfrogged them in the windier afternoon conditions.

Uihlein recovered from a bogey on the first with birdies on the third, fourth and seventh but his round came to life when he holed his second shot on the ninth for eagle, the ball taking one bounce before hitting the pin and dropping in.

He then took advantage of the par five 11th before an 18-foot putt on the 14th gave him a share of the lead and a tee shot to ten feet on the par three 17th moved him ahead.

"I had a 25-footer for par on the second and hooped it, and then holed a nice birdie on three and kind of relaxed a little bit after that," he said.

"The wind switched pretty dramatically and it felt like the real stretch home was down-wind and I felt like we could get some birdies after that so it helped a little bit.

I'm pleased with the way it turned out. I was mentally sound. I didn't really let the bad shots affect me - Peter Uihlein

"I putted nicely, which is always helpful, but if I didn't hit a good shot I didn't really let it bother me, I just let it roll off my back and I was ready for the next one.

"When it's in the wind like this, you're going to hit bad shots, everybody does, so you've just got to accept it and move on."

Frenchman Wattel posted his lowest round of the season so far, registering five birdies and two bogeys on the front nine to turn in 33. A flawless inward nine with birdies on the 11th, 14th and 17th then saw him set the target which was soon matched by Kapur.

The 34 year old was playing through a shoulder injury but it did not seem to bother him as he registered three birdies on each side, including three in four holes from the 12th.

Rhein Gibson then led a strong Australian presence in the chasing pack at five under, with Perth native Brett Rumford a further shot back alongside Scott Arnold, Nick Cullen, Anthony Houston, Todd Sinnott, Swede Magnus A Carlsson and Northern Ireland's Cormac Sharvin, who was playing in his first European Tour event.

World Number 21 Louis Oosthuizen signed for a 70 to sit in the group at two under, a shot clear of defending champion and playing partner Thorbjørn Olesen.

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
2LEVY, AlexanderFRA18-15
T4BOURDY, GrégoryFRA18-13
T4UIHLEIN, PeterUSA18-13
6WATTEL, RomainFRA18-12

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