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Thursday, 29 November 2018
Jason Scrivener  (Getty Images)
Jason Scrivener (Getty Images)

Jason Scrivener was delighted to continue his recent good form as he fired an opening 68 on day one of the Australian PGA Championship at RACV Royal Pines Resort.

The Australian finished third in Hong Kong last week to get his 2019 European Tour season off to a flying start and is looking to build on that on home soil this week.

He came through the Qualifying School in 2014 and 2015 and then had to battle to keep his card for the next two seasons before finishing a comfortable 68th on the Race to Dubai Rankings presented by Rolex in 2018.

The 29 year old achieved that by playing a gruelling 31 events and is hopeful that his bright start to the new campiagn will give him a cushion to play a more flexible schedule in the new year.

"The game feels like it has come around the past two months and it feels like I'm getting more and more consistent," he said. "I just want to give myself chances to win tournaments so we'll see how we go the next few days.

"I played way too much this year. I didn't plan that but I was trying to keep my card in Europe. I played well to get into the final series and then it just snowballed.

"Hopefully next year I can schedule a bit better so I can be a bit better prepared for tournaments."

Spaniard Adrian Otaegui was alongside Scrivener at four under and he was delighted with his start as he searches for a third European Tour win and a first in a regular 72-hole stroke play event.

"I felt confident and very focused today on the course, it was good," he said. "I know it's been a long year and I can feel a bit tired but it was actually good.

"Birdie on the first hole and then bogeyed the second, just three-putted from long distance, and then made three birdies.

It feels like I'm getting more and more consistent. I just want to give myself chances to win tournaments - Jason Scrivener

"I made two bogeys on the back nine, again the long putts. I kind of struggled a little bit with the grain and made three bogeys, which was a little bit unlucky. But it was a good round in general, seven birdies was very good."

Andrew Johnston battled back from a nightmare start to get to two under as he made his debut on the Gold Coast.

The Englishman admitted he was ready to walk off the course after finding water on the tenth and 12th to slip three over but he recovered with five birdies after a pep talk from his girlfriend.

"I nearly walked off the course after 12 to be honest," he said. "It's been a frustrating year and it's really annoyed me in the past.

"It really got to me out on 10 and on 12 after hitting two tee-shots because I have been working so hard to try to get it right. But I spoke to my girlfriend and she just said 'keep going', so I did and I just tried to stay calm. Luckily I turned it around."

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1SMITH, CameronAUS18-16
2LEISHMAN, MarcAUS18-14
T3McGOWAN, RossENG18-11
T3MILLAR, MatthewAUS18-11
5EOM, JaewoongKOR18-7
T6SCRIVENER, JasonAUS18-6

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