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Spieth jumps out to lead at Australian Open

First Round –PGA Tour of Australiasia – Emirates Australian Open –Australian Golf Club Sydney – Sydney, Australia –

American Jordan Spieth opened with a 4-under-67 to acquire the overnight lead at the Emirates Australian Open.

He leads Aussie’s Aron Price and Scott Gardiner by a shot, while World No. 1 Rory McIlroy headlines a group of seven players at T-4 and 2-under.

Spieth, who finished T-3 last week at the Dunlap Phoenix Open on the Japan Tour, sits No. 14 in the Official World Golf Ranking. He entered this week on the PGA Tour of Australasia as a 10-to-1 betting favorite at skybet.com.

Both Spieth and Rory scattered two bogeys in their opening rounds at Australian Golf Club in Sydney. Brendon de Jonge is also 2-under and in contention.

In a surprise start, Adam Scott stumbled out of the gate.

Scott, now third-ranked in the world, logged the tale of two-nines. He logged a 2-under-34 on front nine, but a double bogey at the 10th derailed his back-nine play. He is T-82 after 18 holes alongside 2006 U.S. Open and 2010 Australian Open champ Geoff Ogilvy.

Look for a duel into the weekend. Spieth is due for a victory after coming up just short a few times earlier in 2014 including his run at Augusta in the Masters.

Other Golf news:

  • Nick Cullen, who captured the Australasia Tour’s Beteasy Australian Masters in Melbourne last week, struggled to keep the momentum in round one in Sydney. He shot 2-over-73.
  • McIlroy finished first in the European Tour’s Race to Dubai standings in 2014.
  • Before it was announced Chris Como would be working with Tiger Woods, Chris Como was named to the Golf Digest Best Young Teachers in American 2014-2015 list. Como, 37, teaches out of Gleneagles Country Club in Plano, Texas.
  • Gary Player and Jack Nicklaus are both former champions of the Australian Open. Player won the title seven times, while Jack was a six-time victor. Aussie Greg Norman captured the nation’s open five times.
  • Joe Buck and Norman will team up in the booth on Fox Sport’s golf telecasts this winter. The network has also hired former Golf Channel personality Holly Sonders along with former U.S. Open champion Corey Pavin, Steve Flesch and Juli Inkster.