Wilkinson on the pace at Utah Championship
Lee struggles at John Deere ClassicFRED WOODCOCK
New Zealand golfer Tim Wilkinson is featuring high on the leaderboard after the first round of the Utah Championship in the United States.
The left-hander has opened the second-tier tour event with a five-under par 66 at the Willow Creek Country Club to be in a share of fifth place, two shots off the lead held by three players.
Wilkinson made the turn at one-under after two birdies and a bogey on the front nine before making four birdies on his way home.
It was a good ball-striking day; he hit 10 of 12 fairways and 16 of 18 greens in regulation as he looks to make a move up the order of merit standings.
The 33-year-old has one top-10 from 13 events on the web.com tour and is currently 49th in the overall standings, requiring a top-25 finish at season's end to earn a ticket to the PGA Tour next year.
Kiwi No 1 Danny Lee did not fare so well today at the John Deere Classic on the PGA Tour, a one-under 70 putting him in a share of 84th after the opening round.
Lee had five birdies, two bogeys and a double bogey on what was a day of low scores at TPC Deere Run in Illinois, and he sits nine shots off the leader, American Troy Matteson, who caught fire with a 10-under 61.
Meanwhile, New Zealand amateur rep Ben Campbell has opened with a one-under par 71 at The Players Amateur at the Hilton Head Golf Club in South Carolina.
The 20-year-old made four birdies and three bogeys on the South Course to be five shots back of the American leader Bobby Wyatt, who opened with a six-under par 66.
Fellow New Zealand rep Mathew Perry, who won the New Zealand Amateur Championship in 2011, signed for a three-over par 75 to be tied 48th, while Royal Auckland golfer Fraser Wilkin, who in May won the Muriwai Open on the Charles Tour, shot a seven-over par 79 to be tied 71st.
The Kiwi golfers are in the US playing in elite amateur events ahead of the naming of the Eisenhower team.
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