Jason Day held a share of the lead late in his opening round of the World Golf Championships Bridgestone Invitational only to throw it away with a couple of bogeys.
But the Queenslander still signed for a solid one-under 69 to sit just two off the pace following the morning wave at Firestone Country Club.
Day, coming off his win at the Canadian Open, trails playing partner Rickie Fowler after the American posted a 67 to lead at three under while Northern Ireland’s Graeme McDowell is also three under through six holes.
Frenchman Victor Duibuisson, England’s Paul Casey and American Robert Streb all put up 68s in the early goings of the 77-man lucrative no-cut event.
Fellow Australians Adam Scott and Marc Leishman were unable to negotiate the hard and fast course as well as hoped, left to deal with opening rounds of two-over 74.
Day battled a case of the ‘lefts’ off the tee from the get go but scrambled well to make pars before a birdie on the 14th, his fifth hole, kick started his tilt.
A bogey on the 16th was tempered by a birdie on 17 and when he rolled in birdies on the second and fifth holes he joined the top of the leaderboard at three under.
But misses off the tee on both the seventh and eighth holes coming home would lead to bogeys and he almost added another on the ninth only to be saved by a great wedge from 52 yards to tap in range.
“I don’t know where it came from. I kept going left and left and left. And then I started fighting myself a little bit out there,” Day said.
“But I played actually very decent. I played pretty solid from tee to green. I mean, it wasn’t outstanding, but it was some good shots.
“I hit a lot of close shots that I didn’t take advantage of, but it was a good opening round of 69.”
Steven Bowditch battled to a 73 while Andrew Dodt is three over through nine holes and Nick Cullen sits five over through seven.