Day in solid sec­ond

Townsville Bulletin - - SPORT - LEO SCHLINK

JASON Day says skill, not health, will de­cide the fate of his promis­ing bid for Open Cham­pi­onship glory.

In equal sec­ond be­hind Amer­i­can Dustin John­son af­ter a daz­zling open­ing round, Day said he was un­con­cerned about a re­cur­rence of the ver­tigo at­tacks which sab­o­taged his US Open.

“I feel good. I’m not think­ing about fall­ing over on my face again. It’s good,” Day ( pic­tured) said af­ter shoot­ing a six­un­der 66 around a windswept Old Course. “I’m not wor­ry­ing about it.” Healthy again af­ter be­ing pre­scribed med­i­ca­tion for a vi­ral in­fec­tion which caused the ver­tigo and the fall at Cham­bers Creek, Day was among a clutch of stand­out Aus­tralian per­form­ers in the open­ing round.

The Queens­lan­der col­lected birdies on the sec­ond, fifth, sixth, 10th, 14th and 15th holes to up stage play­ing part­ner Tiger Woods ,who slumped to a hor­ror 76, his worst round as a pro­fes­sional at the Old Course.

“I knew there was go­ing to be a lot of eyes on me. I just wanted to make sure I played solid out there,” Day said. Adam Scott was also strongly in con­tention af­ter a bru­tal weather change bared St An­drews’ sharpest fangs.

On a day when early starters were sig­nif­i­cantly ad­van­taged, John­son shot a su­perb seven- un­der 65 to lead Day and five oth­ers by a stroke on a con­gested leader­board.

Scott was among the late starters but de­fied the worst of treach­er­ous af­ter­noon con­di­tions to card a mag­nif­i­cent two- un­der 70.

Syd­ney’s Matt Jones shot a four- un­der 68 to be well in con­tention.

Mas­ters win­ner Scott was elated af­ter drilling a fiveme­tre down­hill birdie putt on the 18th to make a telling state­ment at the end of a tor­rid and test­ing round.

“It can even out, even over the next three days,” he said of the heavy rain and wind forecast for the sec­ond round.

Be­hind Day and Jones were Scott, Greg Chalmers, Steven Bowditch and Marc Leish­man ( 70), with Ge­off Ogilvy, Brett Rum­ford and Scott Arnold ( 71) also un­der par.

John Sen­den ( 72), Scott Hend and Mar­cus Fraser ( 7 4 ) , Adam Bland ( 75) and Rod Pam­pling and Scott Strange ( 77) all had try­ing days.

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