Team England share early lead at World Cup of Golf in Melbourne
By Ali Stafford
Last Updated: 23/11/18 9:54am
Ian Poulter and Tyrrell Hatton made a fast start to the World Cup of Golf to put Team England in a three-way tie for the lead after the opening round.
The English pair fired a combined 10-under 62 in the Thursday fourballs to join hosts Australia and South Korea at the top of the leaderboard in Melbourne.
Defending champions Denmark sit a shot off the pace alongside Malaysia and Belgium, while Irish duo Shane Lowry and Paul Dunne joined Team India two strokes back.
"We dovetailed nicely and made enough birdies to sit top of the board," Poulter said. "Tomorrow's a completely different game and foursomes is pretty special."
Hatton got up-and-down from a greenside bunker to save par at the first, before Poulter holed a long-range birdie at the par-three next and the pair picked up further shots at the seventh and ninth.
Poulter kicked off the back nine with a 10-foot gain and Hatton birdied the next, with Poulter nailing a 15-footer at the 12th and then converting a hat-trick of birdies from the 14th to move into top spot.
Byeong Hun An and Si Woo Kim birdied four of their final six holes to also share the lead, while Cameron Smith rolled in a 10-foot birdie at the last to also get him and Marc Leishman in to the tie at the top.
Scottish duo Russell Knox and Martin Laird are five off the pace after an opening-round 67, while Wales' Stuart Manley and Bradley Dredge are second-bottom in the 28-team event after a combined two-under 70.
Friday and Sunday will be alternate shot format, with fourballs returning for the third round on Saturday.
Watch the World Cup of Golf throughout the week live on Sky Sports. Live coverage continues on Friday from 1am on Sky Sports Golf.