Oman Open: Guido Migliozzi leads from a host of Ryder Cup stars in Muscat
Set your alarms to watch the second round of the Oman Open on Sky Sports Golf. Live coverage begins Friday at 6:30am
By Keith Jackson
Last Updated: 27/02/20 4:58pm
Guido Migliozzi made a welcome return to form as a six-under 66 earned him the outright lead after the first round of the Oman Open.
Migliozzi's bogey-free opener took him to the top of a congested leaderboard at Al Mouj Golf, with 24 players, including a host of Ryder Cup stars, within three strokes of the leader.
Rasmus Hojgaard, Taehee Lee and Brandon Stone share second place on five under, with Victor Dubuisson, Stephen Gallacher, Ross Fisher and Andy Sullivan all enjoying strong starts as they fired 68s.
Migliozzi has missed the cut in each of his three starts this year having won twice in his rookie European Tour campaign last season, but the Italian rediscovered his rhythm early on in Muscat as he birdied two of his first three holes after starting at the 10th.
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The world No 137 broke a run of seven straight pars with birdies at the second and third, and he made it three in a row with a perfect 20-foot putt on the fourth green, and he closed with his sixth birdie of the round at the ninth to claim the outright lead.
"It's very good to start the tournament with a 66 and a bogey-free round," he said. "It's a good feeling to work my way into this beautiful course and tournament. Obviously, I will try to give my best over the week and for the rest of the year.
"It's a good feeling to be a European Tour winner already. I like to win, and I hope one day will come when I win again."
Migliozzi's playing-partner Stone was also delighted with his day's work as he also kept a bogey off his five-birdie card, while rising Danish star Hojgaard birdied three of the first five holes and picked up further shots at 10 and 12 to also get to five under.
In contrast to the consistent play of the top four, 2014 Ryder Cup winners Dubuisson and Gallacher handed in colourful cards with the Frenchman making birdies at the first three holes and the final two as he mixed eight birdies with four bogeys.
Gallacher's 68 was similarly entertaining, with an eagle at the third, six birdies, two bogeys and one double-bogey at the 17th, while Sullivan made four birdies in six holes on the back nine and closed with 11 consecutive pars.
Meanwhile, the two Italians at the centre of a coronavirus scare on the eve of the tournament both recovered from their ordeals to make encouraging starts.
Hotel room-mates Lorenzo Gagli and Edoardo Molinari were both reinstated to the field having been tested for coronavirus on Wednesday evening after Gagli complained of experiencing flu-like symptoms.
But the pair were given the all-clear to compete, and Gagli was three under par with Molinari at two under when play was halted due to darkness before they could complete the 18th.