SHENZHEN, China — The longer the holes at the Mission Hills golf course, the better Louis Oosthuizen and Adam Scott seemed to play.
Oosthuizen and Scott each had 7-under-par 65 to share a one-shot lead after the opening round of the HSBC Champions on Thursday, in large part because of their perfect play on the five par 5s on the Jose Maria Olazabal-designed course.
Oosthuizen, the 2010 British Open winner, made birdie on all five. Scott did him one better with four birdies and an eagle.
Two-time HSBC Champions winner Phil Mickelson was one shot back, along with Masters Tournament champion Bubba Watson, Peter Hanson and Shane Lowry.
Scott, ranked sixth in the world, is still looking for his first tournament win of the year. He nearly captured his first major at the British Open in July until blowing a four-shot lead over Ernie Els with four holes to play. His best finish since that collapse was a tie for sixth at the BMW Championship in September.
CHAMPIONS TOUR: In Scottsdale, Ariz., defending champion Jay Don Blake birdied three of the final four holes for 6-under-par 64 and the first-round lead in the season-ending Charles Schwab Cup Championship.
Blake has a one-stroke lead over Gary Hallberg.
Fred Couples, Jay Haas, Olin Browne and Bill Glasson shot 66 on Desert Mountain’s Cochise Course.
Schwab Cup points leader Bernhard Langer birdied the final two holes for 69 while Tom Lehman shot 68. Langer has a 211-point lead over Lehman in the race for the $1 million annuity.
Augusta native Larry Mize shot 73.
ASIA-PACIFIC AMATEUR: In Bangkok, Guan Tianlang, of China, shot 6-under-par 66 to build a two-shot lead after the opening round at Amata Spring Country Club.
Guan, who turned 14 in late October, made eight birdies to lead Daniel Pearce, of New Zealand.
Hideki Matsuyama, of Japan, trying to win for the third consecutive year, is tied for 10th after opening with 71.
The winner earns an exemption to the 2013 Masters Tournament and a spot in the final stage of qualifying for the British Open.
LONG PUTTER FIGHT: Keegan Bradley is gearing up to fight the governing bodies of golf if they decide to ban the long putter, and the American is hoping others will rally around the cause, too.
Bradley became the first player to win a major using a long putter when he captured the 2011 PGA Championship. Since then, Webb Simpson won the U.S. Open and Ernie Els triumphed at the British Open.
All three used belly putters.