Michael Campbell's golfing revival continues as the former US Open champion strives to make his fourth successive cut for the first time since 2008 when the Hong Kong Open continues today.
Still buoyed by this third place finish at the Portugal Masters a month ago - his first since the British Masters four years ago - Campbell made an encouraging beginning at the Hong Kong Golf Club in Fanling after his round opened with a potentially ominous bogey.
The 2005 US Open champion atoned for that lapse with an eagle on the par-5 third; two more birdies followed during a solid back nine as he carded a 3-under 67 to trail Spanish leader Javier Colomo by three strokes.
Campbell led some of the sport's biggest names at the European Tour event including world No 1 and defending champion Rory McIlroy who could only manage a 3-over 73.
The 43-year-old New Zealander is enjoying the best run of a career that seemed damaged beyond repair, even though he has made the weekend in only six of 16 tournaments this year.
Top 15 finishes at the French Open and European Masters in July hinted at a long-awaited resurgence while his successful foray to Portugal was followed by another solid performance at the BMW Masters three weeks ago.
Campbell had dropped out of golf's top 600 players until a late season rally enabled him to improve to the 339th-ranked player before the Hong Kong Open.
The top 60 players on the European Tour qualify for the Dubai world championship later this month and Campbell is now an opportunity to participate if he sustains his current form.
- © Fairfax NZ News