Fast start sees Lowry challenging the leaders at Jack’s place

Ronan MacNamara

Shane Lowry

Five successive birdies on the front nine for Shane Lowry laid the foundations for his opening 69 at the Memorial Tournament to leave him just two shots off the early pace.

It’s been a frustrating season to date for Lowry, ranking outside the top-170 in putting on the PGA Tour but in Muirfield Village he was 8th in strokes gained putting in round one as he ended the day on three-under and in a share of third place.

Lowry trails Davis Riley by two after carding five birdies in a row on his front nine from 11-15 before dropping three shots in four holes, although he did recover with a birdie on the 2nd and closed with seven pars.


“Yeah, got off to a very hot start. I rolled in some lovely putts early on. You’re not going to keep that going all day. I had a couple of slip ups, but, you know. Probably wasn’t aggressive enough on 16. Made bogey there. Hit a couple of bad shots after that. You’re going to make bogeys around this course after hitting bad shots.

“I said to my caddie walking there on 5 or 6 there, that just because I got off to a hot start, I feel like it’s playing easy, and it’s important not to get down on my self after making a few bogeys. 3-under’s a pretty good score around here. I’m pretty happy with my start.”

“The wind got up a little bit. Got warmer and started to get firmer. You have to hit fairways. I missed a few fairways and it’s — you miss fairways you’re struggling for pars. But if you hit fairways, the greens are so good that you can give yourself plenty of chances. But, yeah, it’s just tricky out there.”

Lowry impressed at the PGA Championship in Oak Hill last month on a course where you had to hit fairways and Jack’s place will play to his strengths over the next 54 holes with a premium on hitting fairways.

“As the week gets on and it gets firmer and faster there will be a lot of 3-woods and 5-woods off the tee for me. But that’s what this golf course is like. Today the 1st is driver because it’s kind of slightly into the wind and playing a little bit longer, but as the week goes on it will probably be down to a 3-wood after.”

Waterford’s Seamus Power shares 10th place after a two-under 70.

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