Dustin Johnson wanted to make sure he got off to a good start as the defending champion of the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am. He succeeded yesterday because of a phenomenal finish.
Johnson overpowered the par-5s on a pristine day at Pebble Beach and closed with five consecutive birdies to tie the tournament record with a 30 on the back nine, and finish with an 8-under-par 64 to share the top of the leaderboard.
Charley Hoffman had a 6-under 64 on the Shore Course at Monterey Peninsula, the newcomer to a three-course rotation.
The best round might have belonged to David Duval, who played bogey-free until the final hole for a 5-under 67 at Spyglass Hill, traditionally the toughest course of the bunch. The average score at Spyglass was 71.52, compared with 70.89 at Pebble Beach and 69.97 at Monterey Peninsula.
J.B. Holmes finished eagle-birdie at Pebble Beach for a 7-under 65, an unusual sequence that began with him holing an 8-iron on the par-4 eighth over the edge of the Pacific Ocean.
K.J. Choi also had a 65 at Pebble Beach; eight players were tied at 65.
Phil Mickelson made the turn at 3 under, but he missed a short par putt on the 14th and played his final eight holes in 1 over for a 68 at Monterey.
European - Marcel Siem of Germany birdied the ninth hole en route to an 8-under 64 and a one-stroke lead after the first round of the Avantha Masters in Gurgaon, India.