Date: July 01, 2016
Author: Martin Blake

Day’s good start at Firestone

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Jason Day scrambled his way to an opening 67 to put himself on the leaderboard at the Bridgestone International at Firestone today, continuing his hot form.

Day, the world No. 1, had a below-average ball-striking day but utilised his brilliant short game to shoot the equal second-lowest round of the day and put himself in contention in the $US9.5 million World Golf Championship event in Akron, Ohio. 

The Australian, who played alongside compatriot Adam Scott, completed his day's work with a superb seven-iron close to the flag at the long par-three 15th hole, made a difficult two-metre par-saver at the 16th and then parred his way in for a 67. He finished with three birdies and a bogey at the par-four fourth.

American William McGirt (64) was the only player to take full advantage of the course, and he leads by three shots from Day, Emiliano Grillo and Jimmy Walker on three-under. World No. 2 Jordan Spieth is a shot back at two-under, while US Open winner Dustin Johnson began with a one-under 69.

"I felt like I did all right,'' he told Golf Channel. "There were a couple of shots there where they were a little loose, but for the most part (I) hit a lot of good quality shots, iron shots into the greens. I gave myself some opportunities out there. But just, I saved myself. When I was kind of out of position my short game saved me. I had some pretty nice up-and-downs too, to really keep the momentum going.'' 

Of the other Australians, Scott had a disappointing day carding a 71 to be tied-26th after he chipped in for birdie on the first hole but made nothing on the greens for the rest of the day, Marcus Fraser had 73 and Matt Jones 74. Marc Leishman (76), Nathan Holman (77) and Steven Bowditch (82) all struggled.

 Meanwhile in the Barracuda Championship, Greg Chalmers is close to the lead after a nice opening round in the modified stableford US PGA Tour event.