Tournament: acciona Open de España presented by Madrid
DP World Tour Rankings: Tournament 38 of 43 events
Venue: Club de Campo Villa de Madrid, Madrid, Spain
Prize Fund: €1,750,000
Hashtag: #AccionaOpen #DPWT
Round one report
Wu Ashun, Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Darius van Driel held a share of the lead after the opening round of the acciona Open de España presented by Madrid, with all three players producing fireworks in the closing stages of their 63s at Club de Campo Villa de Madrid.
Morning starter Wu closed his round with a hat-trick of gains to head into the clubhouse as the early leader on eight under par, until Thailand’s Aphibarnrat joined him at the summit late in the day after reeling off five straight birdies towards the end of his round.
Dutchman Van Driel also saved his best until last, holing his birdie putt from almost 30 feet on the ninth green to make it a three-way tie at the top of the leaderboard.
Just one shot behind the leading trio were home favourite Jon Rahm, Frenchman Matthieu Pavon and Swede Joakim Lagergren.
World Number Six Rahm said it would be “a true honour” to equal the late Seve Ballesteros’ haul of three victories at his home open (1981, 1985 and 1995) after making a strong start in Madrid. The Major Champion won this event for the first time in 2018 before successfully defending his title in 2019.
Daniel Gavins pulled off perhaps the most spectacular moment of the day at the ninth, bouncing back from a quadruple-bogey eight on the previous hole with an ace on the 174-yard par three ninth hole.
Kiradech Aphibarnrat: “I am really pleased with the start, it’s been a while since I played great golf. I struggled the last two or three years, haven’t seen any low score, especially opening the round here in Spain, so pleased with how I have been playing.
“I haven’t learnt much, all I know is I am so tired. I played the beginning of the year on the DP World Tour and then over to the PGA TOUR, almost the whole season and just came back the last few weeks to try and play until the end. I just need to pick up a couple points before the season finishes. It might be the most difficult year that I spent, ten years on the European Tour, trying to secure my card but I am just putting everything I’ve got into the last few weeks to see how I go.”
Ashun Wu: “It was a lovely day today. I made eight birdies and no bogies, so a lovely bogey-free round and it was nice to play with Ross (Fisher) and Pablo Larrazábal. We talked about the course and enjoyed it today.
“The injury was my neck and I think it was me sleeping bad. It’s not a big problem, but I took two weeks off, so didn’t play Dunhill or the French Open, so stayed in France with my friend, had some rest and did a bit of practice but I am happy to come back to Madrid.”
Jon Rahm: “I told Adam (caddie) walking down our third hole on 12, it is not that my heartbeat was faster, but it was definitely more intense on the first few shots and the first few putts with the home crowd, and I want to do good, and they want me to play well right. With that said it always helps to start with a bridie, all those things help settle things down, and then got a nice up-and-down on the second hole got me going, so it is not more nerve-wracking but a little more intense.
“I am glad I could follow back up my last competitive round with another really good round and keep the good play going. It is important to start strong, the course is only going to get harder, so to come out in the morning and take advantage of the easier conditions was great.
“I think his third one was here (wins by Seve Ballesteros). I mean, it would be incredible. He is obviously the reference in Spain, he made golf where it is in this country and he changed golf worldwide, but here especially. Any time you have the chance to put your name on a list that has only Seve is in it, it’s really incredible. I have been able to do it a couple of times with a few accomplishments but to be able to win this event three times it would be incredible. I don’t want to think about it too much, but it would be a dream come true.”
Matthieu Pavon: “It was a crazy start, one of the fastest I have ever had on Tour I think. I played really solid all day, it clicked in when I started, some good drives down the middles, good irons, good numbers and also putting on fire, so I made a sweet start and I tried to move on with it.
“That was funny today because my game has been solid all day, the putter went from on fire to a little colder, and I tried to get as many chances as I could, and I was like if I drop a few more on the back nine it will be a very good day.
“The greens are quite small and wet at the moment, so when you hit them you can get quite close to the pins. Makes things easier to make some birdies and I think it will be firmer and firmer throughout the week, so the scores will be less good by the end of the week.”
Joakim Lagergren: “I played well out there today. I got my putter going out there on the back nine as well today which was nice, I have been struggling a bit with the putter lately so nice to hole some. The ball striking was really good, so a little bit of a mix of everything.
“I hope I can play some good golf for the rest of the week. Some of it will be the same as today, just hit good swings, good putts and see what happens.”
Round one scores
63 K APHIBARNRAT (THA), D VAN DRIEL (NED), A WU (CHN),
64 J LAGERGREN (SWE), J RAHM (ESP), M PAVON (FRA),
65 D DRYSDALE (SCO), S GALLACHER (SCO), H DU PLESSIS (RSA),
66 N M?LLER (DEN), A QUIROS (ESP), A CA?IZARES (ESP), L MASAVEU (AM) (ESP),
67 V DUBUISSON (FRA), R PARATORE (ITA), E PEPPERELL (ENG), P WARING (ENG), B STONE (RSA), M LEE (AUS), R JACQUELIN (FRA),
68 R SANTOS (POR), E MOLINARI (ITA), D VAN TONDER (RSA), H ZHANG (CHN), M LORENZO-VERA (FRA), Q VIDAL (AM) (ESP), P LARRAZ?BAL (ESP), J CAMPILLO (ESP), A HORTAL (ESP), S V?LIM?KI (FIN),
69 M ANTCLIFF (AUS), J CALDWELL (NIR), A HIDALGO (ESP), A ESMATGES (ESP), N KEARNEY (IRL), Z BAI (CHN), W BESSELING (NED), O WILSON (ENG), O FARR (WAL), M SIEM (GER), Z LOMBARD (RSA), D BRADBURY (ENG), C HOWIE (SCO), J MORRISON (ENG), A GARCIA-HEREDIA (ESP), T STRYDOM (RSA),
70 Y PAUL (GER), J KENNEGARD (SWE), M WARREN (SCO), C PIGEM (ESP), D COUPLAND (ENG), J PAUL (GER), S TARRIO (ESP), T FLEETWOOD (ENG), N ELVIRA (ESP), D LAW (SCO), D HUIZING (NED), L SLATTERY (ENG), C WOOD (ENG), J JANEWATTANANOND (THA), B HEBERT (FRA), S GARCIA RODRIGUEZ (ESP), G FORREST (SCO), N LEMKE (SWE), B EVANS (ENG), T KOIVISTO (USA), J SALAMA (ESP), H LEON (CHI),
71 P DUNNE (IRL), J STALTER (FRA), G MOYNIHAN (IRL), D GAVINS (ENG), R RAMSAY (SCO), E KOFSTAD (NOR), D FICHARDT (RSA), C HANNA (USA), L BJERREGAARD (DEN), S BROWN (ENG), D HORSEY (ENG), L DE JAGER (RSA), P ANGLES (ESP), R MCGOWAN (ENG), J PASTOR (ESP), M HELLIGKILDE (DEN), J SCRIVENER (AUS), J HANSEN (DEN), R MCEVOY (ENG), R KARLBERG (SWE), J LUITEN (NED),
72 W NIENABER (RSA), B RITTHAMMER (GER), A CHESTERS (ENG), G FDEZ-CASTA?O (ESP), A WILSON (ENG), J CATLIN (USA), E DE LA RIVA (ESP), J GARCIA (ESP), T LAWRENCE (RSA), H PORTEOUS (RSA),
73 F CELLI (ITA), F LACROIX (FRA), G STORM (ENG), O LIESER (CZE), A PAVAN (ITA), T AIKEN (RSA), J SINGH BRAR (ENG),
74 Z MURRAY (AUS), R CABRERA BELLO (ESP), M FORD (ENG), C SHARVIN (NIR), J SURI (USA), S DEL VAL (ESP), M KORHONEN (FIN), L VACARISAS (ESP),
75 B HELLGREN (SWE), T LEWIS (ENG), L GAGLI (ITA), R FISHER (ENG), T BJ?RN (DEN), A ARIZABALETA (ESP),
76 P ORIOL (ESP), O FISHER (ENG), R ROUSSEL (FRA), D CAREY (IRL), A ARNAUS (ESP), K BROBERG (SWE),
77 N BERTASIO (ITA),
78 D BERNA MANZANARES (ESP),
83 H ESPOSITO (ESP),