Morikawa eager to savour taste of success after debut Open triumph
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An opening round seven-under-par, 64 saw Rickie Fowler climb to the top of the leaderboard on day one of the 3M Open at TPC Twin Cities. An impressive opening 18 holes from Fowler saw him shoot a bogeyless first round that included seven birdies to give the 32-year-old the clubhouse lead.
Fowler was then followed in by Troy Merritt and Jhonattan Vegas, who also carded seven-under-par to leave a three-way tie at the top on day one of the event.
Darkness forced the opening day’s play to be suspended, meaning the remaining groups out on the course will finish round one ahead of their second round on Day 2 of the event, and if Fowler’s -7 tied-lead is still intact following this it will be the American’s first post-round lead in 555 days.
The 32-year-old came into the 3M Open on the back of an encouraging final round at the Open Championship at Royal St. George’s last week, after carding an impressive five-under-par, 65 in his final round at the tournament.
As a result, the five-time PGA Tour winner carried his form from the backend of the final major of the year into his opening round in Minnesota, as he hunts down his first tour win in nearly two-and-a-half years.
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England’s Tom Lewis also enjoyed a strong start at TPC Twin Cities, after shooting a three-under-par, 68 to leave him tied for 21st heading into round two.
Things could have been even better for the world number 137 from Hertfordshire, however the Englishman found the water hazard twice on the final hole meaning he closed his opening round with a frustrating double bogey, seven on the par five, 18th.
Lewis is joined by 16 players in tied-21st on three-under, including South African Louis Oosthuizen who is looking to put his final round disappointment at the Open behind him, after he squandered a 54-hole lead to miss out on his second Claret Jug by four shots last Sunday.
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World number two, Dustin Johnson sits six shots back, after shooting a one-under-par, 70 in his first round of the tournament.
The former Masters champion is without usual caddie, and brother Austin Johnson after he tested positive for Covid-19.
Instead, Johnson has Taylormade vice president of Tour Operations Keith Sbarbaro on the bag in Minnesota, but confirmed his brother would return for his next outing at the WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational at TPC Southwind on August 5.
The second round of the 3M Open will get underway on Friday, July 23 at 12:30pm BST.
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