Sangmoon Bae makes PGA Tour comeback after military absence
By Sky Sports Golf
Last Updated: 06/10/17 10:29am
Sangmoon Bae made his return to PGA Tour action after a two-year absence for military service during the opening round of the Safeway Open.
Bae posted a one-over 73 at Silverado Country Club to sit eight strokes back from the early lead, in his first appearance on the PGA Tour since the 2015 Presidents Cup.
The 31-year-old stepped away from professional golf to complete his mandatory stint in the South Korean military, a requirement for all able-bodied men aged between 18 and 35.
Bae spent time a rifleman in the army, before returning to action last month with a missed cut at the Asian Tour's Donghae Open in his homeland.
The two-time PGA Tour winner is under guaranteed exempt status for the 2017-18 campaign, following his victory in this week's season-opening event in 2014.
The Korean drained a 28-foot birdie on the opening hole in California but carded four consecutive bogeys from the third, before bouncing backing with gains at the 12th and 18th.
American trio Brendan Steele, Tom Hoge and Tyler Duncan shared the lead after the opening round after all posting seven-under 65s.
Watch the Safeway Open throughout the week live on Sky Sports Golf. Live coverage continues on Friday from 10.30pm.