Scotland’s David Law carded the joint-lowest round of his European Tour career to take the lead at the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters.
The 29-year-old signed for a seven under par 64 at Education City Golf Club, holding a one stroke lead after a bogey-free first round.
Law made a fast start with birdies on his opening three holes and made two further gains before the turn. He then birdied the par five 13th hole before his seventh on the day on the 15th, which moved him one stroke ahead of Italy’s Nino Bertasio, Hennie Du Plessis of South Africa, England’s Richard McEvoy and Kalle Samooja of Finland.
Belgium’s Thomas Detry shares sixth place with European Tour winners Joachim B. Hansen, Garrick Higgo and Joakim Lagergren on five under par, while Jorge Campillo began his title defence with a four under par round of 67.
David Law: “I’ve been guilty over the last few weeks when I’ve had decent rounds going but not finishing them off. I was semi-conscious of sticking with it and trying to go low. I was really happy with how I stuck to my routines, my processes and I came out of it with a good score.
“I’m a lot more focused on my targets rather than my golf swings. Over the last couple of seasons I’ve been guilty of asking myself why I’ve been hitting bad shots, instead of just going on to hit the next one. Over the break we had I sat down with my coach Alan McCloskey and Paul Lawrie, we discussed it and it’s all about getting the ball in the hole now, trusting that you’ve done the hard work and the work’s done.”
Richard McEvoy: “That was probably one of the easiest 65s I’ve ever shot. My game hasn’t been great up until now. Three weeks in the Middle East at the start of the year wasn’t great, but there were signs of some good golf going on.
“I did some good work at home over the last few weeks with my coach, trying to practice with lockdowns and home schooling three days a week. It hasn’t been easy to get in, but managed to get what I could done. I played some very solid golf, putting on 18 holes and didn’t leave myself anything to do. The bogey on the 11th was a three-putt, so overall it was very solid.”
Nino Bertasio: “It wasn’t really a quick start. I got off to a steady start on the back nine. I birdied 18 then one, two and three, so I built some momentum there. I had a three-putt on four but bounced back with birdies on five and six. I had another bogey on seven but I made a great birdie on nine, which is a good par three. I’m really happy with the day.”
Kalle Samooja: “A good start was pretty important. If you’re too many shots behind it’s hard to catch when the wind picks up. Today it was supposed to blow and there was hardly any wind. Apparently it’ll be blowing harder. The new ball I’ve been playing with works well in the wind, so I’m just trusting the ball.”