Thomas Detry found himself at the top of the Maybank Championship leaderboard early on day one after firing five birdies on his front nine.
The 26-year-old Belgian's season is trending in the right direction, with his tied-11th finish at the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters his best result of the campaign so far.
And he flew out of the traps in Malaysia on Thursday morning, picking up birdies at the first, third, sixth, seventh and ninth holes to move to five under par.
He then safely parred the first three holes of his back nine to sit a single shot clear of a stellar chasing pack including his countryman Thomas Pieters, who followed up back-to-back birdies at the 17th and 18th with an eagle on the par-five first.
Austrians Matthias Schwab and Bernd Wiesberger were also on four under alongside Thailand's Jazz Janewattananond and 2016 champion Marcus Fraser.
Oliver Fisher was among the group another stroke back on three under par.