GREG NORMAN shares the lead after the first round of the US Senior Open but we hardly need remind you, don’t put your house on him just yet.
He’s gotta win one soon you’d think, but apparently tent dwelling isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.
The Shark shot a fine six under 66 at a very receptive Crooked Stick course in Carmel, Indiana along with Americans Joey Sindelar, Dan Forsman and amateur Tim Jackson.
The 54 year old Australian was very happy with the way he played and explained away a bogey on the 18th where a par would have seen him with the outright lead on a surprise course change.
But that “would have” or “could have” is the crux of the matter when it comes to Norman’s history at major events.
He is battle hardened thought, this being his third tournament in three weeks.
He missed the cut at the British Open at Turnberry two weeks ago and the Senior British Open at Suningdale last week was another “could have” when he was still in contention until a double bogey on the final round 17th.
“I played well today and the golf course was ready to be had. It was perfect conditions,’’ Norman said.
“The greens were just receptive enough to be aggressive with the shots if you want to play them.’’
Norman was playing like the Shark of old, with long trademark drives, a string of four birdies on the front nine and an accompanying packed gallery. He believes the concentrated tournament play is helping.
‘‘I feel like I’m getting close,’’ he said. ‘‘Even though I played very, very well today, I feel like I’m getting close to getting it all together.’’
One shot astray from the four leaders were Andy Bean and Fulton at 67.
Seven players, led by Senior British Open champion Loren Roberts and 1996 British Open champion Tom Lehman, were two back at 68.
Last year’s winner, Eduardo Romero of Argentina, shot a 73.
British Open highlight Tom Watson finished with a one under 71, delivering on his promise of playing conservatively because of an illness that limited him to just one practice round.