Brave Smith and Day fly Aussie flag

Posted by on July 18, 2019  /   Posted in golf news

by Justin Falconer at Royal Portrush

Cam Smith on the opening day of the 2019 Open Championship.

A few gritty opening day shows by Queenslanders Cam Smith and Jason Day have kept the Australian hope of winning The Open.

Both men went to Royal Portrush in the most difficult round of the opening round, but fought the whole day to run away from Royal Portrush's test connections with only one bogey each and a 1-under-70 in their name.

They will participate in Friday's second round four around the absolute leader JB Holmes, but with their dreams of still lifting the Claret Jug, more than can be said of many of the greatest stars of golf.

"That's probably where my game should be. I felt like I even left a few," Smith said.

"I had a few putts that went overboard, so everything was pretty solid.

"Just knowing that I can leave a shot and not let a million thoughts pass through my mind, I have a clearer mind."

Smith & # 39; s only falling shot came uphill up par 4 1st as the heaviest rain of the morning began to tumble.

But the Queenslander fought from that point and took advantage of the par-5 2nd for birdie for a brave series of seven straight pars.

Another 10 birdie saw Smith joining Day as the only Australians to reach the red numbers on the day before World No.42 produced another run of eight pars on the way back to the clubhouse.

"It seemed like it was calm and hot for a second and the next second it was cold and windy. We had a bit of everything today," said Smith.

"It was nice that I made some good saves there to keep up the pace. I felt as if I had enough in the bag to make a number of birdies, they just didn't really drop."

Despite their identical returns, when Smith and Day have dinner together tonight, there may be very different states of mind at the table, with the first shot of the former World No. 1 day falling to 18.

It was a rock-solid start to The Open for Day, the World No.18 made birdie on the par-4 5th descent before retrieving another blow at 9.

A series of robust ups and downs kept him within striking distance of the top 10, before a pulled 3-wood of the 18th tee shot a long approach in the par-4 and finally a closing bogey.

Fellow Queenslander Jake McLeod was the next best of the Australians, the big debutant gave a 5-over-76 to stay in touch with the cut line at Royal Portrush.

Marc Leishman from Warrnambool based on all his experience in the test conditions, but could only achieve an opening at 7-over-78, the Victorian who was bitterly frustrated by his attempts

"Just a frustrating one, the hole looked very small," Leishman said.

"I rode really well enough to get a very good score and normally my irons are the power of my game and they were pretty sad today to be honest."

"I earned a lot from the things I got."

Meanwhile, it was a heavy introduction to the big championship golf for 28-year-old Dimi Papadatos.

The New South Welshman was another player who played the majority of his round in the worst conditions of the day and finally signed a 12-over 83 to be near the tail of the field.

Papadatos don't have to wait long for redemption at Royal Portrush, it's the first Australian course tomorrow, finished at 6:57 AM local time (3:57 PM AEST) on Friday.

McLeod will be back two groups farther out at 7:19 AM local time (4:19 AM AEST).

Earlier, Adam Scott scored a 7-over-78 for everyone, but eliminated himself from the weekend's action on a day when not much fell on his way.

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