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Dustin Johnson opens with 64 at Old Course to lead Open, Spieth sits two back

First Round — 144th Open Championship — Old Course at St. Andrews — St. Andrews, Scotland —

Dustin Johnson bounced back from his three-putt to lose the U.S. Open last month and shot  7-under-65 in the first round of the 144th Open Championship.

Johnson, a 12-to-1 betting pick at www.ladbrokes.com, jumped out to the lead at the Old Course at St. Andrews, while playing in Thursday’s early wave. Six players — including Jason Day, Zach Johnson and Retief Goosen — are tied at 6-under and a shot back.

Robert Streb and England’s Danny Willett are also in the bunch at 6-under along with 1999 Open champion Paul Lawrie.

World No. 2 Jordan Spieth, gunning for the third leg of the Grand Slam, is T-8 at 5-under alongside former major champions Charl Schwartzel and Louis Oosthuizen. Oosty, who won the Open in 2010 at St. Andrews, finished T-2 at the U.S. Open behind Spieth.

Other Golf News:

  • Sam Saunders fired a bogey-free 7-under-64 and is a shot clear of Jason Gore at the Barbasol Championship in Alabama. It marks Saunders first overnight lead on the PGA Tour. Both were better than 66-1 long shots to win.
  • Ha Ha Jang (5-under-66) made six birdies against a lone bogey to set the pace at the LPGA Tour’s Marathon Classic in Ohio. Four are tied at 4-under including Sarah Kemp. Angela Stanford and Brittany Lang.
  • The last Englishman to win the Open was in 1992. Several are in the mix after 18 holes at St. Andrews including Tommy Fleetwood (T-18), Luke Donald (T-13) and Willett, who finished third earlier this season in the WGC-Match Play.
  • Tiger Woods, a two-time Open champion here at the Old Course, struggled Thursday shooting 76. He is T-139 and needs to go low Friday to make the cut.