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Michael Campbell strong in Qatar Masters

Thursday 24 Jan 2013 6:40 a.m.

Michael Campbell fired five birdies during the Qatar Masters opening round (Reuters file)

Michael Campbell fired five birdies during the Qatar Masters opening round (Reuters file)

By 3 News online staff/AP

Kiwi golfer Michael Campbell has made a solid start to the Qatar Masters, firing a 4-under 68 to be three shots off the pace after the opening round.

The 2005 US Open champions said it was always nice to get off to a good start and had a “great day”.

“My putting stroke was a little bit fast (coming into the tournament) so I tried to slow it down a bit – have a bigger back swing,” says Campbell.

Campbell’s round included five birdies.

The Kiwi trails Ricardo Santos of Portugal whose five birdies on the back nine meant he finished with a 7-under 65 to be one shot lead over Anthony Wall and Peter Whiteford.

Santos had a total of eight birdies to go with a lone bogey on his second hole. Coming off a fourth-place finish at the Abu Dhabi Championship, the 30-year-old golfer from Portugal is looking for his second win on the European Tour.

Wall of England shot a bogey-free round that included four birdies on the front nine and a final birdie on the par-5, 18th. Whiteford, of Scotland, collected six birdies in a bogey-free round.

Several Manchester United players were in the gallery, as the team is training Qatar.


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