Puyallup’s Ryan Moore had 10 birdies in a nearly blemish-free round to shoot a 9-under 63 for a two-stroke lead after the opening round of the CIMB Classic on Thursday in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Friday’s second round, however, was a grind for Moore, who was coming off a top-10 finish at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open last weekend. He had to sink a 17-foot birdie putt on his 18th hole – No. 9 at Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club – to finish the day at even-par 72.
That was good for a 9-under total of 135 and second place behind Keegan Bradley, who held the lead at press time at 12 under with three holes to go in his round. Kiradech Aphibarnrat (69) and Chris Stroud (69) were one shot back of Moore at 8 under. Segio Garcia (71) and Marc Leishman (65) were at 7 under.
After a 1-over opening round, Gig Harbor’s Kyle Stanley had a hot round going Friday – seven birdies in his first 11 holes to move to 6 under – but he had back-to-back bogeys at Nos. 13 and 14 to fall to 4 under with three holes to play.
The $7 million event at the Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club was included on the U.S. PGA Tour’s new wraparound season this year, marking the first time the tour has offered FedEx Cup points at a tournament in Asia.
AS EASY AS 1-2-3
Luke Guthrie took only 19 putts in his round of 7-under 65, giving Americans the top three spots on the leaderboard at the BMW Masters in Shanghai.
Only three Americans are in the European Tour event, and one of them is John Daly – playing for the first time in nearly four months since surgery to repair a torn tendon in his right elbow. He was in second at 5-under 68 – one shot better than American Peter Uihlein, the 2010 U.S. Amateur at Chambers Bay and a European Tour member who has one win this year and is 10th on the money list.
The wind was relentless, and contributed to threesomes taking some 51/2 hours to finish. Only 13 players broke par.
PETTERSEN ON TOP
Defending champion Suzann Pettersen, who has three LPGA wins this year, shot a 4-under 68 to take a three-stroke lead after the first round of the LPGA Taiwan Championship in Yanmei. Americans Alison Walshe and Irene Cho, France’s Karine Icher and Sweden’s Caroline Hedwall were tied for second.