KEEGAN BRADLEY has a two stroke lead and one foot on the plane to Royal Melbourne after the first round of the 2011 Tour Championship in Atlanta.
The 25 year old American rookie fired a six under par 64 to lead fellow countrymen Jason Dufner and Chez Reavie and Englishman Luke Donald tied for second on four under.
Australians Adam Scott and Jason Day are well placed just a stroke further back, tied in 5th with three others.
It is early days in the 30-man field FedEx Cup final event but it seems after a stellar rookie year Bradley doesn’t have to do much more to find himself on Fred Couples Presidents Cup team.
International Team cup hopeful Aaron Baddeley did his chances no damage sitting on 2-under while his main competitors John Senden (3-over) and Vijay Singh (4-over) will have to improve to impress captain Greg Norman.
Both Day and Scott remain mathematical chances to take out the $US10 million dollar bonus for winner of the FedEx Cup, but must win this event and have those above them falter to have any real chance.
Scott was displaying his usual precision ball striking but for once his new long putter was letting him down.
“It was a good round out there today. I played really solid,” Scott said. “I hit a lot of greens but left a lot of chances out there. To finish birdie was a nice way to end the day and make something out of what could have been a really good round.
“I had so many chances from 10 feet today so that’s a little disappointing but it’s good that I’m playing really great and giving myself some chances.
“If I can do that for three more days, I’m pretty sure I’m going to have a hot one out there.”
Day improved as his round progressed, picking up three shots on his last five holes.
Fresh from securing his Presidents Cup spot last weekend, Geoff Ogilvy is also lurking after firing a one-under-par 69 to be tied 16th.2011 Tour Championship Leaderboard