COOLUM, Australia (AP) — New Zealand left-hander Tim Wilkinson shot a 6-under 66 on Thursday for a share of the lead with Australia’s Peter Wilson during the storm-suspended first round of the Australian PGA Championship.
Playing before afternoon thunderstorms forced the suspension of play on the Hyatt Regency resort course, Wilkinson birdied his first two holes and final three on the front nine. Wilson has 6 under with four holes to play.
“I wanted to get off to a good start because the morning conditions were a little bit calm,” said Wilkinson, coming off his first season on the PGA Tour. “If I could do that for three more days, I’d be very happy.”
Australia’s Geoff Ogilvy, the 2006 U.S. Open champion, was a stroke back at 67 along with New Zealand’s Richard Lee. Australia’s Peter Senior also was 5 under with seven holes left.
Officials stopped play in the afternoon after lightning was spotted near the course. Nearly two hours later, and with further storms forecast, they called off play for the day with 78 players – half the field – still on the course.
John Daly shot a 71 in his first appearance in the event since 2002 when he failed to sign his scorecard after a club-throwing tantrum.
“I got off to a bad start, but I came back,” Daly said. “I putted terribly but I’m happy with the way it went.”
Ogilvy had a birdie and eagle on his first three holes and made the turn in 32, but had just one birdie on his final nine.
“Three under after three was a nice way to start,” Ogilvy said. “I played really solid on the front nine and not quite so good on the back.”
Defending champion Peter Lonard shot a 70.