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David Micheluzzi leads in Germany after big finish

David Micheluzzi leads in Germany after big finish

David Micheluzzi catapulted himself to the top of the leaderboard with a birdie-birdie finish to take a one-shot lead after day one of the BMW International Open.

The Australian rookie has had an indifferent start to life on the DP World Tour that he has called "absolutely terrible" but he made a mockery of that form at Golfclub München Eichenried.

The 27-year-old carded seven birdies and a bogey in a 66 to get to six under and lead the way from Scot Ewen Ferguson, South African Casey Jarvis, England's Frank Kennedy and American Patrick Reed.

Big crowds lined the fairways from early in the day as two-time Masters Champion Bernhard Langer played his final DP World Tour event and the 66-year-old gave them something to cheer about with a one-under-par 71.

That was five shots behind Micheluzzi, however, as the 2023 PGA Tour of Australasia Order of Merit winner looked to kickstart his season.

Micheluzzi has made just five of his 11 cuts so far this season but recorded a second top ten of the campaign in Italy last week and is hoping to rediscover the form that got him on Tour.

"Absolutely terrible," he said of his season so far. "I think last week was my fifth cut made this season so I'm just trying to find my feet out here a little bit.

"Now everything is starting to feel a little bit more comfortable and I've just got to do what I do best and that's play good golf.

"I got here from playing good golf in Australia and I've just got to keep doing that."

Starting on the tenth, Micheluzzi holed a long putt after laying up on the par-five 11th, put an approach to ten feet at the 13th and got up and down after finding sand off the tee on the par-five 18th to turn in 33.

A bogey on the third threatened to derail his progress but he holed from the fringe at the next, got up and down on another par five at the sixth and made a 14-footer on the eighth before completing the set on the par fives at the ninth to hit the front.

"It was kind of all over the shop to be honest," he said. "It was a little bit wayward with the swing early and the putter and short game was elite today.

"On the back nine I gave myself some chances. I know I'm putting it really well at the moment."

Reed set the early pace and was six under after a hat-trick of birdies from the 11th and further gains on the 16th, third and fifth but he dropped a shot on the sixth.

Jarvis was bogey-free with gains on the fifth, sixth, ninth, 11th and last, while Ferguson and teenager Kennedy both recorded seven birdies and two bogeys.

England's Joe Dean, South African Darren Fichardt, American Jordan Gumberg, Frenchman Romain Langasque, Dutchman Joost Luiten and Australian Thomas Power Horan were at four under, with 53 players within four shots of the lead.

Belgian Matthis Besard made the 21st hole-in-one of the season with a seven iron from 161 yards on the 12th.

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