CHIBA, Japan (AP) — Kevin Sutherland and Glen Day shot 7-under 65 on Friday to share the first-round lead in the Japan Airlines Championship, the first PGA Tour Champions event in Japan.
“The greens are fabulous,” Sutherland said. “It’s not even just good shape, it’s in great shape. So as a result of that, it lends itself to some good scoring.”
Winless on the 50-and-over tour, Sutherland has had at least a share of the first-round lead in three of the last four events. He ended up losing to childhood rival Scott McCarron — a stroke back Friday — the previous two times, finishing second three weeks ago in the Dick’s Sporting Goods Open in upstate New York and tying for third last week in the Shaw Charity Classic in Calgary, Alberta.
Sutherland closed with a bogey, three-putting the par-4 ninth at Narita Golf Club.
“Early in the round I hit the ball really, really well,” Sutherland said. “I drove the ball very well. On the back side, I made a bunch of long putts and unfortunately I three-putted the last hole. But I left myself a lot of long putts and that’s going to happen eventually. If I…