Thursday, 18 May 2017
Day 1 Highlights - The Rocco Forte Open

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    Sebastian Soderberg et Michael Hoey ont tous les deux signé une carte parfaite de -10 pour prendre la tête du Rocco Forte Open en Sicile sur le parcours du Verdura Golf Club. Julien Guerrier est à 4 coups.

    Le Suédois Soderberg a placé la barre très haute ce matin avec cette carte de 61. Il n'est pas passé loin d'un 59 historique avec un eagle et huit birdies.

    On aurait pu penser qu'il tiendrait le haut du classement tout seul mais le Nord Irlandais Hoey n'était pas de cette avis et a rentré dix birdies pour rejoindre Soderberg en tête.

    La journée a été très calme question météo et l'absence de vent a été propice aux très bons scores. A un seul coup, -9 donc, on retrouve un Alvaro Quiros en odeur de sainteté avec son jeu. Sebastian Heisele et le Sud-Aficain Jbe Kruger sont à -8.

    Soderberg has a win on the Challenge Tour at last season's Barclays Kenya Open and made a brilliant start as he searches for a first European Tour win in just his 15th event.

    Hoey is a five-time winner and veteran of 284 tournaments and his performance represented an excellent return to form after losing his playing privileges last season.

    Soderberg made birdies on the second, fourth, sixth and eighth before an eagle on the ninth helped him turn in 30.

    A birdie-birdie start on the back nine then moved him clear of the field as mutters of a 59 began to circulate round the course.

    Tout s'est bien goupillé et au final cela donne une très bonne journée - Sebastian Soderberg

    A run of five pars put paid to those hopes but the 26 year old then rolled a birdie down the hill at the 17th before an eight-footer on the last moved him to double figures.

    "That (59) was all I thought about walking down the par five 12th," he said. "For me it kind of helped me to help keep me going, I didn't feel like it stopped me. I definitely had a couple of putts the last seven holes that could have run in. Overall, great round.

    "Jusuq'à maintenant la saison a été très bonne. Tout s'est bien goupillé aujourd'hui et cela donne une excellente journée."

    Hoey birdied his opener on the 11th and added further gains on the 13th, 15th, 16th, 17th, first, second and third to once again tease the prospect of a 59.

    He then made four pars in a row but a stunning approach to the eighth produced a birdie and when he found the fringe on the par five ninth with his second, the record was still a possibility.

    He had to settle for a birdie, however, after leaving his putt short and made a par on his last after repeating the trick.

    "I left it in the jaws, both putts, but I was nervous," he said. "It was hard to hit them past the hole but it's nice to be nervous because I haven't been nervous on a golf course for quite a while and it's exciting to be such a good score.

    "My best ever score by two shots, no bogeys, doesn't get much better."

    C'est mon meilleur score avec deux coups de mieux.aucun bogey - Michael Hoey

    A birdie-birdie finish catapulted Lombard up the leaderboard after he had earlier made gains on the 15th, 16th, 17th, first, second, fourth and sixth.

    Spaniard Quiros fired a second consecutive eight under par round on the European Tour, including the 16th hole-in-one of the season when he holed a seven iron from 191 yards on the 13th.

    Heisele, fresh off a top five in Portugal last week, had an eagle on the fourth to go with six birdies while Kruger made a single bogey in his 63.

    English pair David Horsey and Lee Slattery, Portuguese José-Filipe Lima, China's Li Haotong and Spaniard Eduardo de la Riva were at seven under, a shot clear of a group including Ryder Cup Captain Thomas Bjørn.

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    Tournament Leaderboard

    Pos Player nameNatHolePar
    1QUIROS, AlvaroESP18-14
    2LOMBARD, ZanderRSA18-14
    3LI, HaotongCHN18-13
    4ANGLES, PepESP18-12
    T5FRASER, MarcusAUS18-11
    T5SCRIVENER, JasonAUS18-11

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