Aussies lead NZ PGA after first round
Australians Aaron Townsend, Matthew Ballard and Adam Bland shared the lead at 6-under par on Thursday after the first round of the New Zealand PGA golf championships.
Townsend had a bogey-free round to earn his share of the lead, while Bland mixed an eagle and six birdies with two bogeys and Ballard had two eagles, four birdies and two bogyes in rounds of 66.
Five players, including defending champion Michael Hendry of New Zealand, were tied for fourth place, one shot back at 5-under.
Japan's Toshinori Nuto, a five-time winner on the Japan tour, had a 4-under opening round of 68 at The Hills course. Three-time US Open-winner, 67-year-old Hale Irwin shot an 8-over 80.
LEADING FIRST-ROUND SCORES
66 - Aaron Townsend, Australia 34-32, Matthew Ballard, Australia 35-31, Adam Bland, Australia 32-34,
67 - Troy Cox Australia35-32, Michael Hendry, New Zealan d33-34, Stephen Dartnall, Australia35-32, Leigh Deagan, Australia36-31, Mathew Perry, New Zealand 34-33, Rohan Blizard, Australia 35-32, Anthony Brown, Australia34-33, Kim Felton, Australia34-33,
68 - Andrew Kelly, Australia 34-34, Toshinori Muto, Japan 36-32, Andrew Martin, Australia 34-34, Aaron Pike, Australia 37-31, Grant Thomas, Australia 36-32, Ben Pisani, Australia 33-35, Scott Laycock, Australia 35-33, Michael Long, New Zealand 33-35, Steven Jeffress, Australia 34-34, Rika Batibasaga, Australia35-33,
69 - Peter Fowler, Australia 35-34, Timothy Wood, Australia 36-33, Kalem Richardson, Australia 34-35, Gareth Paddison, New Zealand 37-32, Scott Strange, Australia34-35, Brendan Jones, Australia 36-33, Jake Higginbottom, Australia 37-32, Josh Geary, New Zealand 34-35,
70 - Daniel Pearce, New Zealand 37-33, David Bransdon, Australia 34-36, Hong Soon-sang, South Korea 32-38, John Wade, Australia 35-35, Jared Pender, New Zealand 34-36, Michael Tran, Vietnam 37-33, Peter Cooke, Australia 37-33, Ryan Fox, New Zealand 35-35,
71 - Clarke Osborne, New Zealand 36-35, Craig Palmer, New Zealand 37-34, Matthew Griffin, Australia 36-35, Greg Turner, New Zealand 35-36, Angelo Que, Philippines 34-37, Josh Younger, Australia 35-36, Anthony Summers, Australia 38 33, Dominic Barson, New Zealand 33-38, Ryan McCarthy, Australia 34-37, Henry Epstein, Australia 36-35, Christopher Campbell, Australia 33-38, Glenn Joyner, Australia 36-35, Sven Puymbroeck, New Zealand 36-35, Sean Riordan, New Zealand 38-33, Steven Alker, New Zealand 38-33, David McKenzie, Australia 37-34, Terry Pilkadaris, Australia 34-37, Bradley Lamb, Australia 35-36, Kang Dong-woo, South Korea 33-38
76 - Craig Parry, Australia 38-38
80 - Hale Irwin, United States 38-42-