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The Open Championship

July 14, 2011 by staff 

The Open ChampionshipThe Open Championship, Location: Royal St George’s Sandwich, Kent Dates: 14-17 July Coverage: Live on BBC TV, HD, Red Button, online (UK only) and Radio 5 Live, Text commentary on the website BBC Sport (# bbcgolf) and mobile to see again on iPlayer
Rory McIlroy began his quest for the Open Championship with a first round-over-par 71 on a day in Sandwich.

The 22-year-old U.S. Open champion, in the 0909 BST departure time usually reserved for the absent Tiger Woods bogeyed two of his first three holes.

But he birdied the eighth and 17, and just missed another birdie chance from 10 feet in the past.

World number one Luke Donald had difficulty with his putter, but also became a round of 71.

McIlroy, who had been shot in the tournament since his victory magnificent in Congress June 19, hit his approach shots to each of the first three holes on the back of the green.

His playing partner Rickie Fowler, also 22, carded a magnificent 30-foot putt from the edge next to the putting surface in the first, but McIlroy, only a few inches closer, he sent his effort five feet beyond left and missed the change of torque.

After making par on the second chip of a fluffy lie in the third ran 10 meters to take two more, but picked up his first birdie putt with a six-foot in the eighth.

In 13 a curling five feet for par stayed on the left edge of his third bogey of the day.

The par five 14th has a clear opportunity, but finding a critical situation in the bunker with one foot inside and one outside, could only advance the ball a few yards from the trap about 30 feet from the cup and made par.

However, a magnificent approach to five feet at 17 set up another birdie.

“It was okay, it was a tough day he had to be very sick, I knew I would not get many opportunities for birdies, but I’m happy with how I started. When not playing a tournament a couple of weeks are looking forward to returning there, “he told BBC Sport.

“Whenever I can keep around the same time the level will be a total good and hopefully if I can do that, then I will close. I’m so cool, I’m hitting the ball as well as I did.”

Donald, who shot two birdies with two dropped shots in his nine years abroad, he went over par for the first time in 13 when his second shot found a right approximate thickness of the green.

His chip finishing 12 feet short and after appearing strangely conflicted on what was missed putt on the left side.

A similar length putt for a birdie on the par five 14th and also derives another shot went in 15 when a putt from off the green below the surface of the green and could do around the pair.

However, a good approach from the rough at 17 returns to six feet to set up a birdie and had another opportunity in the past, leaving the putt about a foot right.

Ian Poulter began with a round of 69, ending with birdies at 16 and 17.

The world number one 35 years old, 16 had a 20-foot putt at the last to make three birdies in a row, but left a couple of inches short.

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