• Casey barges into Porsche lead

    Paul Casey
    Back to his best

    Paul Casey powered his way to the top of the leaderboard following a first round 66 at the Porsche European Open.

    The Englishman is playing in his first non-co-sanctioned event of the campaign at at Green Eagle Golf Courses and showed why he is World No 17 with powerful driving and precise iron play on the third longest course of the European Tour season.

    Zander Lombard and Louis De Jager were SA’s best after level par 72s

    Casey was among the late starters – playing alongside 2018 Masters winner Patrick Reed and defending champion Richard McEvoy – with the clubhouse target set at four under par by star rookie Robert MacIntyre, Englishman Ben Stow and home favourite Max Rottluff.

    Despite increased winds in the afternoon, the European Ryder Cup star made light of the testing conditions to lead the trio by two shots at the end of day one in Germany.

    Austrian Matthias Schwab was Casey’s closest challenger, just one shot ahead of the front running trio at five under par.

    World No 9 Xander Schauffele, who was in the morning marquee group alongside Thomas Pieters and Wiesberger, endured a roller coaster round of five birdies, four bogeys and a double bogey to finish one over par.

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