Miguel Angel Jimenez fired an opening round 65 at the Omega European Masters Thursday morning to join a couple of Scots who are all trying to run down Anirban Lihiri from India. While still nursing a sore knee Lihiri picked up in a fall a few weeks back, the 26 year-old Indian opened with an eight under par 63 at the beautiful Crans-sur-Sierre Golf Course in Switzerland to take a two-shot lead over the 49 year-old Jimenez, and Scots, Paul Casey and Tommy Fleetwood.
Lihiri had one bogey on the day, but well made up for it, putting two eagles on his scorecard. After his bogey at 13, he went on a tear, with an eagle three at the par five 14th hole, and another at par four 18th hole where he carded a two.
“I’ve a history with my knee as I tore my ACL when I was 15 so it was tough,” said Lahiri.
“I didn’t hit balls for 15 days. Monday was probably my fourth round in a month. I came in with no expectations and just wanted to enjoy my golf and that’s probably what’s happening out there today.”
Anirban Lihiri held the first round lead here last year, but didn’t make the cut. He is currently ranked 178th on the OWGR, and is 231st in Race To Dubai points. He has no wins this year, and three total victories on the Asian Tour.
Tommy Fleetwood has had a decent year on the European Tour, and picked up his first victory a couple of weeks ago at the Johnnie Walker Classic at Gleneagles. The 22 year-old Scot is currently ranked 167th in the world, and is 36th in Race to Dubai points.
Miguel Angel Jimenez has spent most of the 2013 season with health issues as well, after suffering a broken leg while skiing during the winter. His only poor start since returning to action after the US Open, was a 113th place finish at the Scottish Open. He always plays well in major tournaments, and to everyone’s surprise was able to log a T 4 at The WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, and was T 29 at the PGA Championship.
The Spaniard is currently ranked 55th in the OWGR, and is 28th in the Race To Dubai.