BRIDGEND, Wales — Bernhard Langer made a statement of intent when he opened with 6-under-par 65 to take a two-stroke lead over Bob Tway in the Senior British Open at a sweltering Royal Porthcawl on Thursday.
Chris Williams is alone in third after a bogey-free 68 while Andrew Oldcorn is a stroke behind in fourth. Pedro Linhart and Rick Gibson are tied for fifth at 70.
Langer, who threw away a two-stroke lead on the final hole at Royal Birkdale last year and then was beaten for the title in a playoff, was out in a best-of-the-day 31.
He birdied the third, fourth, sixth and eighth holes, and went 5-under when he birdied the long 13th. He dropped a shot at the 16th but then hit back immediately with birdies at the two closing holes.
“Six-under is very satisfying,” Langer said. “I played smart, some good, some great. coming in, but I got lucky.”
Langer is trying to add a second Senior British Open title to the one he won at Carnoustie in 2010.
Colin Montgomerie, bidding for his third successive seniors’ major, shot 74 with just two birdies.
Tom Watson had a roller-coaster front nine of 1-over 36, steadied the ship for five holes after the turn, then dropped three strokes on successive holes before birdieing the last for 74.
LPGA TOUR: In Owings Mills, Md., Yani Tseng made a 12-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole to give Taiwan a sweep of the top-seeded United States team in the opening round of the International Crown, a 32-player, eight-country team tournament.
Tseng and Phoebe Yao never trailed in a 1-up win over Stacy Lewis and Lexi Thompson after Candie Kung and Teresa Lu beat Paula Creamer and Cristie Kerr 4 and 3.
Tseng made the winning putt after Lewis failed from a bit farther out on her own birdie try.
Each team receives two points for a win and one for a tie. The U.S. was the only team that failed to secure a point on the first day.
Today, the United States will face Spain (3 points) in Pool A.
EUROPEAN TOUR: In Moscow, David Horsey birdied four of his final six holes for 7-under-par 65 and the lead after the first round of the Russian Open over two players, including former Augusta State golfer Scott Jamieson.
Peter Whiteford also matched Jamieson’s 66.
Jamieson, who started his round on No. 10, capped his day with an eagle at the par-5 eighth hole and a birdie at the last. Whiteford birdied four of his last seven holes.
James Heath, another former Jaguar, shot 71.
WEB.COM TOUR: In Overland Park, Kan., former Georgia Tech golfer Paul Haley II shot 7-under-par 64 to lead the Midwest Classic.
Haley has a one-stroke lead over Sebastian Cappelen and Manuel Villegas.
Four players with area ties are in the field. Henrik Norlander led the contingent with 66. Scott Parel and Matt Hendrix had 70s and Roberto Diaz shot 71.
Jarrod Lyle shot 67 in the Australian’s first U.S. event since his second bout with leukemia.