Jimmy Walker leads by two after one round in Hawaii

By The Sports Xchange  |  Jan. 6, 2017 at 6:52 AM
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Jimmy Walker fired a bogey-free, 8-under-par 65 to take a two-shot lead over Jim Herman, Justin Thomas and Ryan Moore after the opening round of the SBS Tournament of Champions on Thursday in Kapalua, Hawaii.

Walker, the reigning PGA Championship winner and 21st-ranked player in the World Golf Rankings, rolled in six birdies and an eagle on the Plantation Course at Kapalua Resort in the inaugural PGA Tour event of 2017.

"I enjoy being here," Walker said. "I love the scenery. I'm a very visual person, so I enjoy looking out and watching the whales when I'm walking around."

His eagle came at the par-5, 532-yard No. 5 hole after placing his 226-yard approach shot 12 feet off the cup.

"(The putt) had about 12 feet of break on it," said the 37-year-old Oklahoma City native and six-time Tour winner.

Herman, Thomas and Moore carded 67s, with all three playing bogey free and Moore picking up two eagles at No. 5 and the par-4, 380-yard No. 3. Herman is a friend of U.S. President-elect Donald Trump and played a round with him at Trump International in West Palm Beach, Fla., before Christmas.

"I've spent a lot of time with president-elect before he was president, and I've played a lot of golf with him," Herman said.

Daniel Berger and Jason Dufner are tied for fifth at 68. World No. 3 Dustin Johnson headlines a five-way tie for seventh with Cody Gribble, Pat Perez, Japan's Hideki Matsuyama and Australia's Rod Pampling at 69.

World No. 1 Jason Day of Australia is five shots off the pace and tied for 12th. Day, who signed an apparel deal with Nike last week, had three bogeys opposite six birdies.

"(My play) was actually alright," Day said. "Just didn't putt that great."

Defending tournament champion and world No. 2 Jordan Spieth is tied for 22nd at 72 after two bogeys and three birdies.

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