Mixed start for Irish in Valencia

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Updated: October 20, 2011

England’s Ross McGowan shot an opening round of 64 to lead the Cabello Masters in Spain. He leads the strong field by two shots just two weeks after his Madrid Open win.

The highlight of his round came on the 17th when he had a three to eagle the long Par 5. The Englishman has slipped dramatically down the rankings following consistent wrist injuries but the win in Madrid a fortnight ago and now this superb opening round suggest he might be back to his best.

Spain’s Sergio Garcia is three shots behind on his home course in Valencia, just days after stating his intentions to play in the 2012 Ryder Cup. Fresh from his win at the Portugal Masters, Tom Lewis endured a mixed day. Starting on the back nine, he went out in 38 but came back in 33 to card an opening 71 and later reported to feeling unwell.

Fabrizio Zanotti and Richard McEvoy share second place at five-under. Italian sensation Matteo Manassero is five shots off the top, while Jose Maria Olazabal, who could skipper Manassero at next year’s Ryder Cup, is one-over.

It was a mixed day for the Irish in the Spanish sun. Northern Ireland’s Michael Hoey is the best placed in tied fourth after a promising -4 par 67. While Damien McGrane is in a tie for 17th after a 69. Gareth Maybin, Peter Lawrie and Shane Lowry all have work to do after shooting over par while the latter had a nightmare after having a 78 which leaves him bottom of the field.

Nominated for 2011 Realex Web Awards

www.victorchandler.com

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