Date: August 22, 2008

Mahan mauls field

Hunter Mahan produced an eagle on his opening hole before blitzing the first day at the Barclays with a nine-under 62, establishing a five-stroke lead over Australian Matthew Goggin. After a disappointing PGA Championship last weekend, Mahan put himself back in contention for one of four remaining places available in America&aposs Ryder Cup side for next month, through one of the best performances of his career. Mahan started well by holing out on his second approach shot to the first hole, sinking the ball from 94 metres before producing another eight birdies for the round, his one blemish being a bogey on eight. His nearest challenger is Englishman Paul Casey, who started early at the Ridgewood course in New Jersey, producing a five-under-66. Goggin, though, is in a five-way tie for third position. The Australian bogeyed his opening hole before immediately restoring par through a birdie on two. An eagle on four followed and the remainder of his round saw him post four birdies and a further two bogeys for a four-under-67 score. Goggin is alongside Americans Bo van Peelt, Kevin Streelman, Charley Hoffman and Dudley Hart and is one-stroke ahead of nearest Australian challenger, Adam Scott who is tied for eighth after posting a three-under-68. Aaron Baddeley is a further stroke back after looking good going out. The Victorian produced three birdies in his front nine but could only follow it up with a bogey coming home. He is level with compatriot Robert Allenby, who also had an inconsistent day, firing in an eagle on the fifth hole before following that up with two birdies and two bogeys over the remainder of his round. Further back, John Senden, Stuart Appleby, Steve Elkington and Rod Pampling are all on even-par after shooting 71s, while Nick O&aposHern and Geoff Ogilvy are another stroke behind. Peter Lonard signed for a two-over-73, while Jason Day is locked with New Zealand&aposs Tim Wilkinson (76) and Aussies Nathan Green (77) and Matt Jones (77) further back on the leaderboard. The Barclays, Ridgewood Country Club, Scores from Round 1 (Par 71) -9: Hunter Mahan 62 -5: Paul Casey 66 -4: Bo Van Pelt 67, Kevin Streelman 67, Matthew Goggin (Australia) 67, Charley Hoffman 67, Dudley Hart 67, -3: George McNeill 68, Adam Scott (Australia) 68, Rich Beam 68, Jesper Parnevik 68, Bubba Watson 68, Steve Stricker 68, , Also: -2: Aaron Baddely (Australia), Robert Allenby (Australia) 69 E: John Senden (Australia) 71, Steve Elkington (Australia) 71, Stuart Appleby (Australia), Rod Pampling (Australia) +1: Nick O Hern (Australia) 72, Geoff Ogilvy (Australia) 72, +2: Peter Lonard (Australia) +3: Jason Day (Australia) 74 +5: Tim Wilkinson (New Zealand) +6: Nathan Green (Australia), Matt Jones (Australia) 77