Sahith Theegala plays his shot from the
seventh tee during round one of the
Sanderson Farms Championship at the
Country Club of Jackson on Friday (Manila
time) in Jackson, Mississippi. AFP PHOTO
JACKSON, Mississippi: California rookie Sahith Theegala carved his tee shots into play and made it look easy from there Thursday (Friday in Manila) for an 8-under 64 and a one-shot lead over Nick Watney and Harold Varner 3rd in the Sanderson Farms Championship.
Theegala missed three fairways but was out of position just once at the Country Club of Jackson. He had a birdie putt on every hole but one and finished his round with a 15-foot birdie on the par-4 ninth.
It also was a big start for Watney, coming off one of his worst seasons. Watney holed a couple of long putts, including a 45-footer for eagle on the par-5 second hole, for his lowest start to a PGA Tour event in 15 months.
Varner, whose wife is due next week, had another strong putting round in making nine birdies.
Defending champion Sergio Garcia, the only player from the Ryder Cup last week in the field, had two birdies in a bogey-free round of 70 that left him six shots behind. He is drained from last week, when he set the Ryder Cup record for most matches won in a European loss. His only frustration was having too many chances from the 20-foot range.
His birdies putt were from 3 feet and 10 feet, one of them on a par 5.