Ireland's Denis O'Sullivan carded a flawless seven under par 65 to move into a one shot lead after the first round of the De Vere PGA Seniors Championship at De Vere Carden Park in Cheshire.
The former Irish amateur international carded seven birdies and 11 pars to go into the second round a single shot ahead of Scotland's Craig Maltman, with South Africa's Robbie Stewart and Australian's, David Good and Bob Shearer, sharing third place on five under par 67.
Australia's Brian Jones, Trinidad and Tobago's, America's Gary Wintz and Scottish duo Martin Gray and Bill Longmuir all posted 68s and America’s George Burns, England’s Martin Foster and Northern Ireland’s Paul Leonard shared 11th place on three under par 69.
O'Sullivan started his round with birdies on the second and third holes. He also picked up shots at the 522 yard par five fifth and the 373 yard par four seventh before coming home in 33 with further birdies at the 13th, 14th and 16th.
"That was as good a round as I have played for quite a while," said O'Sullivan. "I gave myself a lot of chances. In fact, it would be no exaggeration to say that I could have shot 61 or 62 if I had holed all the putts I thought were going in."
Maltman is making just his second European Seniors Tour start after finishing tied 44th at last week's Senior British Open, presented by MasterCard, at the Westin Turnberry Resort. The Eyemouth man got of to a blistering start with four birdies and one dropped shot over his opening six holes and then also birdied the 13th, 14th and 17th to set the early pace.
"I hit the ball well and holed some great putts as well," said the Scot. "The secret to the round was that I didn't get into much trouble. It was all pretty easy for a change."
England's Carl Mason carded a one under par 71 on his first outing since losing out to Tom Watson in a play-off at last week's Seniors British Open, presented by MasterCard.
The former Scottish Open went out in one over par 37 and was still one over par after a birdie at the 10th and a bogey on the 12th. However, a brace of birdies on the 187 yard par three 13th and the 528 yard par five 14th saw him record his tenth under par score in 11 outings since joining the Seniors Tour a month ago.
"It was one of those rounds when not that much happened," said Mason. "I struggled a bit going out but it was good to get round in under par. At least that’s something to build on over the weekend."
Defending champion, Japan's Seiji Ebihara, also recorded a one under par 71.