Hoylake (UK): Thailand's Kiradech Aphibarnrat overcame a mid-round wobble to shoot an opening round of even par 72 at The Open Championship on Thursday. India's Anirban Lahiri, the current Asian Tour Order of Merit leader, struggled to make any headway after missing half the fairways with some wayward tee shots.
After starting his campaign at a sun-kissed Royal Liverpool with early birdies on three and five, Kiradech, the reigning Asian Tour number one stumbled with two double bogeys on seven and nine after hitting some poor chips. But birdies on 13 and 16 ensured he stayed well within reach of the early pacesetters in the year's third Major championship.
"I wasn't striking the ball well, struggling around the greens. Hit two bad chips and made two doubles on the front nine. But overall, I'm happy with the way I'm playing. It's difficult around the greens as you get tight lies. I've also been struggling with my chipping recently. I'll try to work it out after this," said the burly Thai.