By Nitanti Alur
Photo by Golffile
Cormac Sharvin and Jonathan Caldwell got off to solid starts on the opening day of the Hero Open at Marriot Forest of Arden. Sharvin was looking for a better performance this week as he failed to make the cut at last weeks Betfred British Masters, however, had a disappointing start with bogeys on the par 5, 3rd and par 3, 8thto make the turn on two over par.
The Northern Irishman had a brilliant back nine parring the 10th and 11th but on the par 5, 12th Sharvin had a brilliant approach shot and sank the putt for his first eagle of the tournament. He followed this with birdies on the par 3, 15th and par 5, 17th to finished two under par and tied 41st.
Fellow Northern Irishman Jonathan Caldwell was looking to build on his good form from last week after reaching his highest European Tour Position, however, he had a mixed first round and finished one under par.
The Clandeboye golfer started his front nine with a birdie on the par 5, 3rd, he sunk another birdie on the par 5, 7th but unfortunately dropped a shot on the par 4, 9th to make the turn one over par.
The 36-year-old had a similar back nine with a birdie on the par 5, 12th but unfortunately dropped shots on the par 5, 13th and on the par 4, 16th. He recovered well to sink a birdie on the par 5, 17th and is currently tied 62nd.
Gavin Moynihan had a disappointing start to his opening round. He parred his first four holes and sunk a birdie on the par 3, 5th but gave it back on the par 4, 6th. He parred the 7th and sunk another birdie on the 8th to make the turn on one under par.
The Louth golfer had a mixed back nine with a bogey on the par 4, 10th. He recovered well to birdie the par 4, 11th and par 5, 12th but dropped a shot on the par 4, 13th. He unfortunately bogeyed two of his last three holes to finish on one over par and tied 92nd.
Paul Dunne had a tough first round, where mistakes cost him dearly. He played very consistent golf and parred the front nine. He started his back nine badly, dropping a shot on the par 4, 10th and then parred his way to the par 3, 18th but unfortunately dropped a shot on the last to finish on two over and tied 108th.
Dunne and Moynihan will be looking for a very strong start tomorrow if they are to make the cut.
Sebastian Garcia Rodriguez smashed the course record at Forest of Arden Marriott Hotel and Country Club courtesy of a ten under par opening 62 at the Hero Open, on a day when Miguel Ángel Jiménez proved the ultimate showman by carding a superb 64 on his record 707th appearance on the European Tour.
"For me it was incredible today. The key was the driver and the putts. It was just so close to the hole all the time with my putting. It’s amazing. It’s my lowest score on the European Tour. It’s incredible, it’s my dream to play on this tour. The course is perfect, the range is lovely. Miguel (Ángel Jiménez), for me, is the best. He’s the boss." added Rodriguez
All eyes were on Jiménez heading into the first day at Forest of Arden Marriott Golf and Country Club as he broke the long-held record held by Sam Torrance for the most appearances in the history of the European Tour. "It’s been a wonderful day, eight under par. Beautiful summer day and especially now on the 18th here with all my colleagues. Very emotional. I enjoy everything about my life here."
Photo by Golffile
"This is not the first time I’ve said it, it’s a way of living. It’s not about business, it’s a way of living. Golf is my life. You never remember any bad moments. I cannot describe my day, you have to be inside my skin."
"This is a wonderful life, golf. You never remember the bad times. There are days you make 80, make a bad score, but you play golf. You can understand that you’re not going to be in the perfect mood and not make the perfect score every time. You can have a bad game, but not a bad day, that’s the difference." added Jiménez
And the 56-year-old did not disappoint as he carded a flawless eight under round which left him just two shots back from the lead held by his Spanish compatriot Garcia Rodriguez, and alongside another fellow countryman Pablo Larrazábal in a share of second place - whose 64 came despite a lost ball at the 14th hole.
"I lost a ball on 14, so to shoot eight under with a lost ball is probably the lowest round of my European Tour career. I know I’ve shot nine under somewhere, but with a lost ball I’m quite happy." Larrazábal added
"Raúl (caddie) and I took a lot of positives from last week. I hit a lot of great shots, the mistakes were a little bit wild. I made a lot of silly mistakes. The birdie run was there today and I like these greens. I was really happy when I arrived on Monday. I’m happy for Sebastian (Garcia Rodriguez as well. I saw he shot ten under, I’m happy for him. It’s going to be another three days of fun." added Larrazábal
Welshman Oliver Farr was a shot further back on seven under par while Rasmus Højgaard, runner up at last week's Betfred British Masters hosted by Lee Westwood, was one of three players in a share of fifth place on six under.