Italian Open: Jamie Donaldson and Eddie Pepperell part of six-way tie
By Ali Stafford
Last Updated: 13/10/17 5:19pm
Eddie Pepperell, Jamie Donaldson and Matt Wallace are part of a six-way tie for the lead after the opening round of the Italian Open in Milan.
The British trio posted matching seven-under 64s on a day of low scoring at Golf Club Milano to join defending champion Francesco Molinari, Alexander Bjork and Kiradech Aphibarnrat at the top of the leaderboard.
Byeong Hun An eagled the last to join George Coetzee on six under, with Masters champion Sergio Garcia part of the group two strokes off the pace and Jon Rahm a further shot back.
Home favourite Molinari made a fast start with seven birdies in his first 11 holes, before responding to blemishes at the third and eighth with gains at the sixth and ninth - his final hole.
Aphibarnrat and Bjork both made blemish-free starts to the week, while Donaldson fired a hat-trick of gains around the turn and finished with back-to-back birdies to join the leaders on seven under.
Pepperell made it a five-way tie for the lead, reaching the turn in 33 and adding a birdie at the 11th before posting an eight-foot eagle at the 14th and penultimate-hole gain.
Late starter Matt Wallace surged up the leaderboard on his second nine, posting four birdies in a six-hole stretch and cancelling out his bogey at the seventh with gains over his final two holes.
Coetzee bogeyed his opening hole but recovered to card five birdies and an eagle to get within one of the lead, as An got off to a bogey-free start.
Alex Noren birdied his final hole to get within two of the lead, with Chris Paisley and Marc Warren both mixing six birdies with one bogey to also sit in the group on five under.
Last week's Alfred Dunhill Championship winner Tyrrell Hatton kicked off his week with a two-under 69, as Race to Dubai leader Tyrrell Hatton opened with a level-par 71.
Watch the Italian Open throughout the week live on Sky Sports Golf. Live coverage continues on Friday from 9am.