Karlberg races to two-shot lead at CIMB Classic

Thu 30 Oct 2014

Karlberg races to two-shot lead at CIMB Classic

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Kuala Lumpur, October 30: Sweden’s Rikard Karlberg brilliantly surged into a two-shot first round lead at the US$7 million CIMB Classic after firing a bogey-free seven-under-par 65 on Thursday.
The 27-year-old became the first Asian Tour player to hold the lead in the five-year history of the prestigious tournament, thanks to an outward 31 which included a chip-in birdie on the eighth hole at the Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club’s West course.
Angelo Que of the Philippines, who is a three-time Asian Tour winner, American duo Billy Hurley III and Brian Stuard are tied second in the event sanctioned by the PGA TOUR and Asian Tour.
Defending champion Ryan Moore of the United States birdied his last four holes for a 68 for a share of fifth place with amongst others Prom Meesawat of Thailand, Major champion Davis Love III and former Asian Tour number one Noh Seung-yul of Korea, who was victorious at the West course in 2010.
Angelo Que of Philippines Angelo Que of Philippines
“My putting was great after a hot start and then it was a little bit so-so,” said Karlberg, who is a two-time Asian Tour winner.
“I did an important par on 13 and kept my round going and it was nice to finish with those two extra ones (17 and 18) at the end.”
After struggling with a virus infection for over a year, the 2010 Asian Tour rookie of the year knows he must dig deep to stay ahead of the pack for a chance of winning his biggest career victory.
“I’ve been struggling with a virus infection where I get the flu symptoms. That gets you a little bit stressed out and I realised that I can’t really do anything about it. Just try to eat as good as I can, at least that’s what the doctors say,” explained Karlberg, who finished tied fifth here at the Malaysian Open in April.
“I was a little bit frustrated before the two last tournaments coming into this week. Now I’m out there to have fun and that made a big difference. It is not every day that I play in this kind of big tournaments and I love this track because it fits my game.”
The flamboyant Que, one of the most colourful characters on Tour, continued his hot form in a round that included seven birdies. The Filipino qualified for the CIMB Classic after finishing second at the Hong Kong Open a fortnight ago.
“I’m trusting myself where back before every time I’m teeing up, I’m still debating what to do, what kind of shot I’m going to hit. These past few weeks, I’ve just been stick to my game plan and every time I have a shot, I commit to it, trusting it,” said Que.
Starting from the 10th hole, title holder Moore was level-par through 14 holes but was rewarded for his patience when he ended day one with four birdies including a 25-footer on the ninth green.
Davis Love III of USA Davis Love III of USA
“I wasn’t hitting bad shots. They just weren’t quite turning out, and I missed a couple of greens in a couple of tough spots, and sometimes making good up-and-downs and par savers are almost more important than making birdies,” said Moore, who won the event in a dramatic Monday play-off last year.
The 50-year-old Love turned back the clock after following a round of four birdies and two bogeys. His highlight of the day was a twenty footer eagle on the par five 10th hole.
“You know, and I was off for a couple of years.  I wasn't playing well, and I was physically wasn't ready to play with my injury, and then trying to come back from that injury, I think my confidence was just not there 18 holes a day.  It's there about 14.  I hope I can just keep working on that and doing positive,” said Love.
Scores after round 1 of the 2014 CIMB Classic being played at the par 72, 6967 Yards Kuala Lumpur GCC course (am - denotes amateur):
65 - Rikard Karlberg (SWE).
67 - Billy Hurley III (USA), Brian Stuard (USA), Angelo Que (PHI).
68 - Tim Wilkinson (NZL), Ryan Moore (USA), Kevin Streelman (USA), Davis Love III (USA), Seung-Yul Noh (KOR), Jeff Overton (USA), Prom Meesawat (THA), David Lingmerth (SWE).
69 - Ryo Ishikawa (JPN), Scott Stallings (USA), Sergio Garcia (ESP), Kevin Na (USA), Jonas Blixt (SWE), Danny Lee (NZL), Matt Every (USA), Will MacKenzie (USA), Kevin Chappell (USA), Nicholas Thompson (USA).
70 - Rory Sabbatini (RSA), Patrick Reed (USA), Chris Stroud (USA), Cameron Smith (AUS), Hideki Matsuyama (JPN), Jonathan Byrd (USA), Brice Garnett (USA), Brendon de Jonge (ZIM).
71 - Brian Davis (ENG), Gary Woodland (USA), Steven Bowditch (AUS), K.J. Choi (KOR), Michael Putnam (USA), Sang-Moon Bae (KOR), Heath Slocum (USA), Ricky Barnes (USA).
Ryan Moore of the United States Ryan Moore of the United States
72 - Morgan Hoffmann (USA), Lee Westwood (ENG), Pat Perez (USA), Troy Merritt (USA), Charlie Wi (KOR), Antonio Lascuna (PHI), Tim Clark (RSA), Billy Horschel (USA), John Senden (AUS), Jason Knutzon (USA).
73 - Paul Casey (ENG), Luke Guthrie (USA), Mike Weir (CAN), Robert Allenby (AUS), Nicholas Fung (MAS).
74 - Retief Goosen (RSA), David Lipsky (USA), Jhonattan Vegas (VEN), Stewart Cink (USA), Stephen Lewton (ENG), James Hahn (USA), Jason Dufner (USA), Anirban Lahiri (IND), Charl Schwartzel (RSA), Marc Leishman (AUS), Trevor Immelman (RSA).
75 - J.B. Holmes (USA), Chesson Hadley (USA), Greg Chalmers (AUS), Danny Chia (MAS), Boo Weekley (USA), Will Wilcox (USA).
76 - Kyle Stanley (USA), Tian-Lang Guan (am, CHN), Charlie Beljan (USA), Carlos Ortiz (MEX).
77 - Roberto Castro (USA).
81 - Seuk-hyun Baek (KOR), Matt Jones (AUS).
About CIMB Group
The title sponsor of the CIMB Classic is CIMB Group. CIMB Group is one of ASEAN’s leading universal banking groups. Headquartered in Kuala Lumpur, the Group is now present in 8 out of 10 ASEAN nations. CIMB Group offers a full suite of financial services and related products; has a market capitalisation of approximately USD 19.0 billion as at 30 June and over 40,000 employees located in 18 countries. Read more about CIMB Group at www.cimb.com.
About PGA TOUR
The PGA TOUR is the world’s premier membership organization for touring professional golfers, co-sanctioning more than 130 tournaments on the PGA TOUR, Champions Tour, Web.com Tour, NEC Series-PGA TOUR Latinoamérica, PGA TOUR Canada and PGA TOUR China.
The PGA TOUR’s mission is to entertain and inspire its fans, deliver substantial value to its partners, create outlets for volunteers to give back, generate significant charitable and economic impact in the communities in which it plays, and provide financial opportunities for TOUR players.
Worldwide, PGA TOUR tournaments are broadcast to more than 1 billion households in 225 countries and territories in 32 languages. Virtually all tournaments are organized as non-profit organizations in order to maximize charitable giving. In 2013, tournaments across all Tours generated more than $134 million for local and national charitable organizations and in early 2014 the TOUR’s all-time charitable contributions surpassed $2 billion.
The PGA TOUR's web site is PGATOUR.COM, the No. 1 site in golf, and the organization is headquartered in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL.
About the Asian Tour
As the official sanctioning body for professional golf in Asia, the Asian Tour leads the development of golf across the region, enhancing the careers of its members while maintaining a commitment to the integrity of the game. The Asian Tour, through its membership of the International Federation of PGA Tours, is the only recognised pan-Asian professional golf tour in Asia. This unique feature positions the Asian Tour at the pinnacle of professional golf in Asia; providing its events with Official World Ranking status. Tour Partners include Abacus (Official Apparel Partner), Inetol Headwear (Official Headwear Sponsor), Oakley (Official Eyewear and Footwear Sponsor), PRG (Official Accessories Supplier), Saxo Capital Markets (Official Statistics Partner), Srixon (Official Ball), Titleist (Official Web Partner) and Rolex (Official Timekeeper). The Asian Tour has offices in Kuala Lumpur and Singapore. Also, visit us at www.asiantour.com, www.facebook.com/asiantourgolf, www.twitter.com/asiantourgolf, www.youtube.com/theasiantour and www.weibo.com/asiantourgolf.