7 Oct 2016

Sport: Anthony Houston claims first round lead in Fiji

8:24 am on 7 October 2016

Australian golfer Anthony Houston equalled the course record of seven under par 65 to claim the first round lead at the Fiji International.

The 24 year old Victorian combined six birdies and an eagle with a solitary bogey on the Natadola Bay Championship Course to be one shot clear of compatriots Stephen Leaney and Jake Higginbottom.

"I got off to a really good start, when it was windy as well; I was 5-under through seven holes," he said.

"I had a rough patch mid-round but I held it together and made a few birdies coming home. It's always nice to birdie the last, it was the highlight of my round."

Australian golfer Anthony Houston.

Australian golfer Anthony Houston. Photo: PGA of Australia

Australians make up the entire top ten of the leaderboard, with American PGA Tour winners Brandt Snedeker and Boo Weekley in a share of 11th place at three under par.

Snedeker, the top-ranked player in the field, said it was far from perfect but he was content with his efforts in windy conditions.

"Got off to a good start - this golf course can definitely jump up and bite you and I kind of avoid the big numbers today so hopefully I can get those tomorrow morning with some good weather and hopefully light wind and be aggressive, make some birdies and kind of jump up that leaderboard a little bit."

Fiji golfer Vijay Singh

Fiji golfer Vijay Singh Photo: PGA of Australia

Vijay Singh was the best placed Fijian after the opening round, in a share of 19th place at two under par.

"Made a couple of little errors, it could have been one or two (strokes) more better but a first round 70 is not bad, never bad. Hopefully it stays like this (weather-wise) and if it gets

any windier then just deal with it."

Meanwhile 2014 champion Steven Jeffress carded an even par 72 and is on the cut-line in a share of 58th place.

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Photo: PGA of Australia