Collin Morikawa grabs first-round lead at Zozo Championship

Collin Morikawa hits a shot at the Zozo Championship.

Collin Morikawa opened the Zozo Championship with a six-under 64 on Thursday. He's got a one-shot lead over five players.

Getty Images

If Collin Morikawa had any rust following a lengthly layoff from tournament golf, it certainly didn’t show.

The two-time major champion opened the Zozo Championship with a six-under 64 on Thursday at Accordia Golf Narashino Country Club in Japan. He’s got a one-shot lead over five players who are tied at five under.

It’s Morikawa’s first start since the Tour Championship in late August, although he was a part of the U.S. Ryder Cup team that lost to Europe earlier this month.

Phil Mickelson promises more PGA Tour players will join LIV Golf
By: Josh Berhow

“Taking a few weeks off, you never know what you’re going to get, but I’ve been kind of working on a few things trying to get control of the golf ball, spent a lot of time putting [Wednesday],” Morikawa said. “It’s nice to kind of see the work I’ve put in, just kind of recreate that on the golf course. Obviously you never know how it’s going to be, but it was a fun round today.”

Morikawa, playing alongside K.H. Lee and Adam Scott, started on the back nine and got hot early, making birdies on 10, 11 and 13 to go three under in his first four holes. He added birdies at 16 and 17 to shoot 31. He added eight pars and a birdie on his second nine to cap a bogey-less day.

He missed four greens in regulation but got up and down to save par on all of them.

Robby Shelton, Mikumu Horikawa, Eric Cole, Nicolai Hojgaard and Emiliano Grillo are all tied for second at five under. Xander Schauffele is three back at three under, as is defending champion Keegan Bradley.

Morikawa is searching for his first win since July 2021, when he won the Open Championship at Royal St. George’s. He tees off for his second round at 9:24 p.m. ET on Friday. The second round will be broadcast on Golf Channel from 11 p.m. ET on Thursday to 3 a.m. Friday.

Exit mobile version