CARNOUSTIE, Scotland (AP) — Sweden’s Alex Noren matched the course record with an 8-under 64 at Carnoustie to take the first-round lead in the Dunhill Links Championship.
The 34-year-old Noren had eight birdies in a bogey-free round. He won the Scottish Open in July and the European Masters in Switzerland last month,
England’s Ross Fisher was second after a 65 at Kingsbarns. Sweden’s Joakim Lagergren and England’s Matt Ford shot 66. Lagergren played Carnoustie, and Ford Kingsbarns.
England’s Callum Shinkwin and France’s Raphael Jacquelin opened with 67s to top the players at St. Andrews, the site of the final round.
Six of Europe’s losing Ryder Cup team made the journey from Hazeltine to Scotland, with Thomas Pieters, Rafa Cabrera Bello, Martin Kaymer, Lee Westwood, Danny Willett and Matt Fitzpatrick all in action at Carnoustie. Pieters and Cabrera Bello shot 70, Kaymer 71, Willett 73, Westwood 75, and Fitzpatrick 77.
LPGA TAIWAN CHAMPIONSHIP
TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) — Sakura Yokomine bogeyed the final hole for a 5-under 67 and a one-stroke lead over Brooke Henderson, Paula Creamer and Amy Yang in the LPGA Taiwan Championship.
Yokomine eagled the par-5 12th — hitting a 5-wood to 15 feet — and had three back-nine birdies at windy Miramar before dropping the stroke on the par-5 18th. The 30-year-old Japanese player is winless in two seasons on the LPGA Tour after winning 23 times on the Japan LPGA Tour.
Henderson birdied three of the final four holes, playing in the last group of the day. The 19-year-old Canadian has two victories this year, winning the major KPMG Women’s PGA in June.
Creamer had a bogey-free round. Yang was 6 under through 13 holes, then bogeyed the next two.
Defending champion Lydia Ko had a double bogey on the par-4 fifth in a 70. The top-ranked New Zealander won by nine strokes last year at Miramar. She has four LPGA Tour victories this season.
NATADOLA, Fiji (AP) — Anthony Houston shot a 7-under 65 in the Fiji International, leading 10 Australians atop the first-round leaderboard.
Houston eagled the par-5 17th and had six birdies and a bogey at Vijay Singh-designed Natadola Bay. The European Tour is sanctioning the event for the first time, teaming with the PGA Tour of Australasia.
Stephen Leaney and Jake Higginbottom were a stroke back, Jason Norris, Damien Jordan, Matthew Giles, Aaron Pike and Aaron Wilkin shot 67, and Ryan Haller and Matthew Griffin followed at 68.
Brandt Snedeker, coming off the United States’ Ryder Cup victory Sunday in Minnesota, topped the group at 69 along with fellow Americans Boo Weekley and Ryan Carter.
Singh had a 70. The 53-year-old Fijian is a three-time major champion.
ASIA-PACIFIC AMATEUR CHAMPIONSHIP
INCHEON, South Korea (AP) — Australia’s Cameron Davis shot a 7-under 65 to take the first-round lead in the Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship, with the winner Sunday getting a spot in the Masters.
The 21-year-old Davis, second behind China’s Jin Cheng last year in the rain-shortened tournament in Hong Kong, had eight birdies and a bogey at Jack Nicklaus Golf Club. Two weeks ago in Mexico, Davis led Australia to the World Amateur Team Championship and won the individual title.
Australia’s Brett Coletta and Japan’s Yuwa Kosaihira were two strokes back at 67 in the event conducted by the Asia Pacific Golf Confederation, the Masters Tournament and The R&A.
China’s Guan Tianlang, the 2012 winner in Thailand at age 14, had three straight double bogeys in a 82. Now 17, he dropped nine strokes in a six-hole stretch in the middle of the round.
IOA GOLF CLASSIC
LONGWOOD, Fla. (AP) — The Symetra Tour canceled the IOA Golf Classic because of Hurricane Matthew, leaving players with just one event left in the money race for LPGA Tour cards. The Orlando-area tournament was scheduled to begin Friday and end Sunday.
The season-ending Symetra Tour Championship is next week at LPGA International in Daytona Beach. The final top on the money list will earn LPGA Tour cards.