Hoylake delivers perfect conditions

Congleton Guardian: Tiger Woods got his first round of the 143rd Open Championship under way with a bogey Tiger Woods got his first round of the 143rd Open Championship under way with a bogey

Perfect conditions provided plenty of scoring opportunities on the first day of the 143rd Open Championship at Royal Liverpool in Hoylake.

However, while a number of players were under par after three hours' play, 14-time major winner Tiger Woods was not one of them.

The American, playing in only his second event since back surgery in March, teed off at 9.04am in front of a huge, expectant crowd but failed to deliver at the opening hole.

In keeping with his tactics for this links - where in 2006 he used the driver just once on his way to victory - he took an iron off the first tee.

But with it being softer than when he won on a hard-baked course last time he conceded plenty of distance to his rivals, who were more aggressive.

Playing partner Angel Cabrera's drive was 75 yards ahead of the American, who from furthest back on the left edge of the fairway dumped his approach into a pot bunker at the front of the green.

Such was his lie he had to play away from the flag and the ball rolled into a swale off the front edge, from where he two-putted for bogey - which is how he began when he won the third and last of his Claret Jugs here eight years ago.

That put him four shots off the lead, held by Australian Marc Leishman who birdied the third, fifth and 10th to move ahead of a group including Americans Brooks Koepka and Ryan Moore, Italians Edoardo Molinari and Matteo Manassero - who holed his third shot at the opening hole for birdie - and Spaniard Sergio Garcia, who was two under after sinking a 15-foot putt on the third.

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