Date: February 13, 2009
Author: Sportal and PA Sport

Blyth tied for fifth

Australian Adam Blyth has made a solid start to the Malaysian Open to be in a tie for fifth after the opening round. Blyth had six birdies in his bogey-free round to post a six-under-par 66 to lie four shots off the lead. Mitchell Brown also began promisingly with a four-under 68, while Tony Carolan, Stephen Leaney and Marcus Both all shot opening rounds of 70 to be in a tie for 30th. Scott Barr, Darren Beck and Unho Park are in a tie for 49th after all shot one-under-par rounds of 71, while Marcus Fraser, David Gleeson, David Bransdon and Gavin Flint are at even-par. Korean teenager Noh Seung-yul carded a 10-under-par 62 to take a one-stroke lead. The 17-year-old fired an eagle and nine birdies against a lone bogey at Saujana Golf & Country Club&aposs Palm Course to edge ahead of playing partner Alexander Noren of Sweden in the event co-sanctioned by the European and Asian Tours. Former Asian Tour Order of Merit winner Liang Wen-chong of China and France&aposs Jean-Francois Lucquin were tied for third after shooting seven-under 65s while Nick Dougherty finished strongly to join Blyth and local favourite Danny China in fifth, a further shot back. Japanese ace Shingo Katayama and two-time Malaysian Open winner Thongchai Jaidee of Thailand are in contention on three-under but world No.11 Anthony Kim has much work to do if he hopes to survive the cut after struggling to a six-over 78. Noh, last year&aposs Asian Tour Rookie of the Year, began his round on the back nine with a poor tee shot at the 10th but recovered to sink his first birdie of the day from 45 feet. Playing partner Noren set the pace for much of the morning after opening with four consecutive birdies and going out in six under. But Noh kept in touch with the Swede and overhauled him with an eagle at the par-five seventh and his ninth birdie of the day on the eighth. The lone blemish on the Korean&aposs round was a bogey on the par-three fifth but the youngster had much to smile about after his magnificent opening effort. “I didn&apost make any mistakes today and I putted really well to post a good score,” said Noh, who won the Midea China Classic and had three runner-up finishes on his debut season on the Asian Tour. “I&aposm happy but you don&apost win a tournament on the first day.” “The eagle on seven was pretty special but with a 10 under today, every moment was a highlight.” Noren had nine birdies in his bogey-free 63 and Noh admitted the Swede&aposs good play was a motivating factor for himself. “He played well at the start of the round,” said Noh, an admirer of KJ Choi and Australian ace Adam Scott. Kim will be looking for a marked improvement in his putting tomorrow after a poor opening round. “It was a very bad day at the office,” said the American. “My ball striking was as good as it has been for the last couple of months but obviously I putted like I couldn&apost see, which was unfortunate.” “But we&aposll get them tomorrow. I haven&apost hit my driver that well in a long, long time and I am confident that I can go out there tomorrow and shoot quite a few under par if I can get a few putts to fall.”