Renato Paratore and Max Orrin share the lead after day one at the Nordea Masters, with blustery conditions contributing to some tough scoring at Barsebäck Golf and Country Club.
With the morning bringing the worst of the day’s winds, just 12 of the early starters managed to get round under par. 20 year old Italian Paratore was the best of them, recovering from two early bogeys to post a 68 and lead the way at the conclusion of the morning session.
Englishman Orrin had joined him at five under par by the close of play, with the 23 year old shrugging off a double-bogey at the third hole – his 12th – to finish with three birdies in his last five holes.
Welsh duo Jamie Donaldson and Bradley Dredge are one off the lead at four under par, with Frenchman Benjamin Hebert, England’s Eddie Pepperell and Haotong Li of China a shot further back.
It was a disappointing day for the marquee group, with defending champion Matthew Fitzpatrick finishing on level par, and Sweden’s hottest golfing properties Henrik Stenson and Alex Noren at level par and two over respectively.
Renato Paratore: “I didn’t start well, I was two over after four holes, but from there to the 18th I played really well, really solid, so in the end it was a good round.
“I was playing well even with the two bogies, so I just had to stay patient, and that helped me to get to five under par.
“The key for me today was the driver from the tee. That’s very important here because it’s a narrow course. Today it was important that I managed to drive really well.
“It’s a tricky course – both the front nine through the trees and the back nine down at the coast.”
Max Orrin: “It was tough out there. There were a lot of swirling winds and cross winds as well, so it was difficult to judge clubs. But I managed to put a good score together in the end, so I’m very happy with that.
“I missed it on the right sides a lot of the time if I didn’t hit the greens. There are small greens around here so if you do short side yourself you’ll struggle to make an up and down. I holed some key putts and just scrambled a round together.
“I’ve been playing well recently and putting some good numbers on the board. I played on Monday at the U.S. Open qualifier and got close there. There are some really good signs with my putting. I’m just really enjoying being out there at the moment.”
Bradley Dredge: “I’m delighted with that. It was a bit cold and breezy this morning. We started on the back nine, which is a bit exposed, but coming into the trees on the front nine it was starting to warm up a bit and it turned into a nice day. My golf matched it for most of the round, so yes, very pleased.
“I was playing well all day but wasn’t quite getting it close to the hole to make some putts but I managed to get a few a bit closer towards the end and knock a few in.
“I was pleased after Monday (qualifying for the U.S. Open). I had been playing well for a bit but just not scoring as well as I would have liked. I’ve been hitting the ball well so you just need to be patient with it. It’s my first US Open in all of these years so I’m really looking forward to it. It will be an interesting challenge.”
Eddie Pepperell: “It was my first look at the golf course today, so I’m very happy with that round. It was tough, and it’s a really nice golf course actually. I had heard good things about it so, yes, I loved playing it.
“I was playing well for the first six holes but just couldn’t hole a putt. It was the story of my last few events really. My caddie just told me to stay patient, which I did, then holed a nice one on the seventh to make birdie. I played well for the most part.
“I got into the rhythm of things early on. I felt like I picked up where I left off on Monday (after qualifying for the U.S. Open) and that was nice because I didn’t arrive here until Tuesday night and didn’t do much yesterday with the wind being so strong.”
Benjamin Hebert: “I’m happy with that. It wasn’t easy this morning. It was quite windy and cold at the start, but the course is in good condition. So I’m happy, it was a good start.
“My driving was very solid. It’s important to reach the fairways because the rough is quite hard this week. The greens are small so it’s very important to be on the fairway to reach the green, and I hit a lot of fairways today.
“It was amazingly windy yesterday and it started off a bit like that this morning but I think it is going down now for the rest of the week, so I think it will be great out there for the rest of the week.”
Henrik Stenson: “I don’t think it was too bad. It was tricky in the morning, it was cold and windy. Now we’re back in t-shirts but I had on four layers this morning during the warm up and the first couple of holes. The weather and the temperature was improving throughout the day.
“Game-wise it was OK. Nothing too great and nothing too bad. I kept it somewhat tidy. There were a couple of dropped shots and a couple of birdies, so level par. I don’t know what more to say about it.
“It was nice to finish with a birdie. I made about a 12 footer on the ninth there to finish the day level and I’m not in a super-bad position so hopefully it can improve from here.”
Round One Scores
68 R Paratore (Ita) , M Orrin (Eng) ,
69 J Donaldson (Wal) , B Dredge (Wal) ,
70 E Pepperell (Eng) , B Hebert (Fra) , L Haotong (Chn) ,
71 J Lima (Por) , J Winther (Den) , S Chawrasia (Ind) , S Hend (Aus) , S Soderberg (Swe) , T Lewis (Eng) , A Wu (Chn) ,
72 T Olesen (Den) , T Jaidee (Tha) , J Wang (Kor) , J Van Zyl (RSA) , S Lee (Kor) , R Karlberg (Swe) , R Green (Aus) , F Aguilar (Chi) , A Connelly (Can) , M Southgate (Eng) , P Edberg (Swe) , J Fahrbring (Swe) ,
73 N Colsaerts (Bel) , G Coetzee (RSA) , S Jamieson (Sco) , P Peterson (USA) , R Ramsay (Sco) , D Brooks (Eng) , K Broberg (Swe) , C Paisley (Eng) , P Hanson (Swe) , J Quesne (Fra) , K Aphibarnrat (Tha) , J Parry (Eng) , G Bourdy (Fra) , L Bjerregaard (Den) , A Sullivan (Eng) , N Elvira (Esp) , L Westwood (Eng) , J Guerrier (Fra) , H Stenson (Swe) , M Fitzpatrick (Eng) , G Storm (Eng) , S Dyson (Eng) , M Ilonen (Fin) , S Kapur (Ind) , R Langasque (Fra) , Z Lombard (RSA),
74 O Fisher (Eng) , R Wattel (Fra) , L Canter (Eng) , A Levy (Fra) , M Pavon (Fra) , N Kimsey (Eng) , R Echenique (Arg) , J Lagergren (Swe) , M Siem (Ger) , A Wall (Eng) , L Jensen (Den) , J Campillo (Esp) , C Blomstrand (Swe) , S Walker (Eng) , C Wood (Eng) , M Warren (Sco) , S Gallacher (Sco) , D Frittelli (RSA) ,
75 A Otaegui (Esp) , R Gouveia (Por) , S Gros (Fra) , N Lemke (Swe) , R Fox (Nzl) , P Waring (Eng) , J Carlsson (Swe) , R Sterne (RSA) , M Armitage (Eng) , D Lipsky (USA) , A Noren (Swe) , J Walters (RSA) , R McEvoy (Eng) , T Bjørn (Den) , P Larrazábal (Esp) , J Smith (Eng) , T Immelman (RSA) , N Bertasio (Ita) , M Manassero (Ita) ,
76 S Brazel (Aus) , W Ormsby (Aus) , J Stalter (Fra) , C Hanson (Eng) , A Bernadet (Fra) , R Rock (Eng) , G Stal (Fra) , A Björk (Swe) , B Rumford (Aus) , O Stark (Swe) , A Chesters (Eng) , S Heisele (Ger) , T Detry (Bel) , H Porteous (RSA) , A Cañizares (Esp) , M Fraser (Aus) , E De La Riva (Esp) , B Ritthammer (Ger) , D Im (USA) , O Gillberg (am) (Swe) , H Rönneblad (am) (Swe) , F Nilehn (am) (Swe) ,
77 R Gonzalez (Arg) , A Dodt (Aus) , R Jacquelin (Fra) , A Hansen (Den) , S Manley (Wal) , D Drysdale (Sco) , M Nixon (Eng) , G Havret (Fra) , J Luiten (Ned) , Z Wright (USA) , P Maddy (Eng) , J Scrivener (Aus) , M Larsson (Swe) , R Bland (Eng) , M Miller (USA) , J Edfors (Swe) , N Fasth (Swe) ,
78 P Widegren (Swe) , M Kieffer (Ger) , J Ahlers (RSA) , A Knappe (Ger) , J Dantorp (Swe) , P Dunne (Irl) , R Finch (Eng) , M Foster (Eng) , P Angles (Esp) ,
79 R Dinwiddie (Eng) , S Henry (Sco) , G Kristjansson (Isl) , J Rutherford (Eng) , G King (Eng) , O Lengden (Swe) , D Perrier (Fra) ,
80 M Atlevi (Swe) , C Shinkwin (Eng) , N Johansson (Swe) , A Karlsson (Swe) , S Tiley (Eng) , M Carlsson (Swe) , R Johnson (Swe) ,
81 L Slattery (Eng) , F Fritsch (Ger) ,
82 D Stewart (Sco) , R Karlsson (Swe) ,
** D Howell (Eng) ,