Fitzpatrick sets the pace at next year’s Ryder Cup venue, with McIlroy returning as he looks to extend his advantage in the DP World Tour standings; Watch the DS Automobiles Italian Open on Friday from 7:30am on Sky Sports Golf
Last Updated: 09/15/22 7:28 pm
Matt Fitzpatrick topped the charts after a first day of unsettled weather at the DS Automobiles Italian Open, where Rory McIlroy bounced back from a slow start to impress.
Fitzpatrick was five points behind for his round with three holes left at Marco Simone GC when play was halted due to bad lighting, after lightning delayed the start of the opening round earlier in the day.
The US Open champion took shots in second and seventh, before continuing his no-magic start to the week and taking the lead with three birdies in a row from game 11.
Fitzpatrick will return at 7:30am local time (6:30am GMT) on Friday to complete his opening round, with the Briton continuing with a one-shot advantage against a group of eight players. – including McIlroy – over four under.
“It was really annoying,” Fitzpatrick said after being unable to finish. “I tried to push us as fast as possible, but the rest of the pitch was obviously playing a little bit slower. Especially when you’re having a good half, you just want to keep going, but it is position. “
Joost Luiten and Alvaro Quiros were a slow hitter with 5 and 2 holes left respectively, while McIlroy lived up to his pre-tournament bill by making an eagle and 3 birdies in seven holes. his last to hit four under 67.
McIlroy almost got out of the rough on day ten – his opening of the day – only to win the next game, grappling with a par three on day 12 and aborting a birdie close range on the 16th by missing a five-footer to save lives on the 17th.
Last week’s BMW PGA Championship runner-up shot past 20 feet to avoid another monster in 18th place before an eagle escaped from the third fairway sparking the rankings, with a birdie. 12 feet in fifth place, followed by back- up again from eighth.
When asked what he was thinking mid-half, McIlroy said Sports sky: “Maybe I shouldn’t have stayed up so late last night! I felt like I was still asleep while playing the previous number nine game.
“That eagle obviously burned something and kind of warmed up my round a little bit and I played some really good golf on the way in. I can’t complain, I played today. nine is harder and nine is easier is not so good. . I just need to clean up some things for the next few days.”
Eddie Pepperell, Scott Jamieson, Antoine Rozner, Adri Arnaus and Gavin Green also all have four points below, while defending champion Nicolai Hojgaard sits two games behind and captain Luke Donald is third with four holes remaining. .
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September 16, 2022, 8:30am
“It was tough out there but I played some solid golf, golfed really well on the first nine holes and then lost a bit of rhythm on nine holes after teeing off and put me in some positions. difficult position beyond the tee,” Hojgaard said. “But most of all, it was a good start for the defence.”
Viktor Hovland, playing with Fitzpatrick and among other players making the trip to Rome ahead of next year’s Ryder Cup venue, is among those playing under 15 holes and will finish on Friday.
Watch the DS Automobiles Italian Open live all week on Sky Sports. Live coverage continues Friday with Featured Groups from 7:30am on Sky Sports Golf, before full coverage from 12:30pm.