Shanghai, April 19:
Franceâ€™s Raphael Jacquelin fired a six-under 66 to snatch a one-stroke lead after a first round of the Asian Open in Shanghai on Thursday.
Ernie Els, who won the tournament by 13 strokes two years ago, was five shots off the pace at one-under-par 71. Els is chasing his first win of the year at the $2.3 million event after finishing second on Monday in the Verizon Heritage.
Jacquelin had seven birdies against just one bogey to head the field. Denmarkâ€™s Soren Kjeldsen was one stroke off the pace after shooting a five-under 67, while Lee Sung of South Korea, Gregory Havret of France, and Australiaâ€™s Gavin Flint had rounds of 68.
Flintâ€™s round included an eagle three on the par five second, one of just two eagles for the day.
Scotlandâ€™s Colin Montgomerie, who missed out on a place in the playoff at last yearâ€™s
Asian Open by a stroke, was among a group of six players at three-under-par 69, along with Australians Tony Carolan and Scott Hend, South Koreaâ€™s Park Jun-won, Peter Hanson of Sweden, and Taiwanâ€™s Lin Wen-hong.
Defending champion Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano was at one-over 73, while fellow Spaniard and 2004 winner Miguel-Angel Jimenez had a 70. Sundayâ€™s China Open winner Markus Brier of Austria shot one-under-par 71.
The Open is co-sanctioned by the European and Asian Tours.