Sport: McIlroy looms large as Lorenzo-Vera leads in Dubai - - PressFrom - United Kingdom

Sport McIlroy looms large as Lorenzo-Vera leads in Dubai

16:45  21 november  2019
16:45  21 november  2019 Source:

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The 14 Club Challenge: Episode 1. Pablo Larrazabal vs Mike Lorenzo - Vera in the first of a new series from the European Tour. Every week you can find extended tournament highlights and individual player highlights of the likes of Rory McIlroy , Justin Rose and Tommy Fleetwood from events on the

Michaël Lorenzo - Vera (born 28 January 1985) is a French professional golfer. Lorenzo - Vera was born in Bayonne, Pyrénées-Atlantiques in South-West France. After turning professional in 2005, Lorenzo - Vera played on the Alps Tour, one of Europe's third tier development tours.

Rory McIlroy holding a baseball bat: World number two Rory McIlroy © Getty Images World number two Rory McIlroy

Rory McIlroy shot 64 but could not keep an unwell Mike Lorenzo-Vera off top spot as the Frenchman carded the lowest opening round in the history of the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai.

World number two McIlroy, a two-time champion at Jumeirah Golf Estates, closed Thursday's play one stroke behind Lorenzo-Vera.

The pair turned in well-matched scorecards, each showing an eagle and a solitary dropped shot, but the four-time major winner sunk one birdie fewer than his rival. 

Watch: McIlroy still chasing No 1 target (Sky Sports)

With former rugby player Niall O'Connor acting as his caddie, McIlroy went out in 31 but saved the best until last.

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Austria's Matthias Schwab and Frenchman Mike Lorenzo - Vera shared a one-stroke lead after carding seven-under-par 63 in the European Masters first round in Crans Montana on Thursday. Schwab had set the clubhouse target with seven birdies, five of which came on the front nine

Matthias Schwab and Michael Lorenzo - Vera lead the way at the Omega European Masters, but FedEx Cup champion Rory McIlroy isn't too far off the pace. Making his fourth consecutive start in as many weeks, McIlroy definitely wasn't at his best, but remains a dangerous presence on the leaderboard

On the 18th hole, he nailed a stunning approach to within three feet and holed the subsequent eagle putt to conclude an excellent round.

Still it was shy of Lorenzo-Vera's effort, the world number 96 overcoming illness to earn himself a slice of history with an unmatched opening 18 holes to sit nine under.

"Honestly, I'm not feeling well at all," said Lorenzo-Vera, who has never won on the European Tour. "I have no energy. I had a big lung infection in South Africa and a big treatment and really feel bad on top of that.

"I felt that if I really relaxed a lot, just swing it like 70 per cent or maybe less, the ball was still flying pretty well. Try to be pretty clever and not too aggressive and then the putter got hot. So that worked."

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Jamie Donaldson remains the man to catch after a weather-affected second day of the Omega Dubai Desert Classic, with Rory McIlroy well placed in the chasing pack. After fog delayed the start of play by two hours and 50 minutes

Mike Lorenzo - Vera showed no sign of a wedding hangover as his stunning back nine earned a share of the European Masters lead , while Rory McIlroy and Sergio Garcia enjoyed solid starts in Crans-Montana. Newlywed Lorenzo - Vera picked up six shots after the turn in his opening round to join

Race to Dubai leader Bernd Wiesberger went round in 70 and is still projected to take the top prize based on day-one standings.

His closest rival for that honour at the start of the week, Tommy Fleetwood, dropped a couple of shots on the back nine to sign for a five-under-par 67.

Of the three other names in with a chance, Jon Rahm fared best as he got to six under, but Matt Fitzpatrick's 71 and The Open champion Shane Lowry's 73 are likely to have ended their hopes.

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Rahm named European Tour Golfer of the Year after stellar 2019 .
After following in Seve Ballesteros' footsteps by winning the Race to Dubai, Jon Rahm has replicated the Spanish great again.Rahm enjoyed a superb 2019, which he ended by winning the Race to Dubai with victory in the World Tour Championship last month.

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