American Kisner grabs British Open lead

Ireland's Shane Lowry on the 4th green

Ireland's Shane Lowry on the 4th green Ireland's Paul Dunne lines up a putt on the 4th green

He looked like dropping shots on several holes coming home, but saved par on 16, 17 and 18 with some brilliant scrambling.

However, the 30-year-old Englishman's recent re-emergence from the doldrums - he missed the cut in eight of his first 10 tournaments this season - continued on Thursday with a two-under-par 69 in the first round of the British Open.

Kisner finished his round with a superb back nine after finishing in 54th place at last year's Open.

South Africa's Zander Lombard cut a confident, yet mature, figure after an opening four-under 67 to sit in second spot in the first round of The Open at Carnoustie Golf Links on Thursday.

Van Rooyen, who qualified for his first British Open by coming second at the Joburg Open late past year, was two shots ahead of English duo Danny Willett and Matthew Southgate.

"We've got a good tour and I think it's time for the next generation to step up and play well", Van Rooyen said.

"But this is a unusual, odd game".

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"Even getting the clubs out and going to play at home without having to do two hours of warm-up and go see the physio felt pretty good".

"It's definitely nice to be stood here after shooting a relatively stress-free 69". "No, it wasn't good for a while, but that's kind of the situation we were in, and we're fighting, swinging it a little bit on and off, and the body being really uncooperative".

'Regardless of what the golf is and how the golf is, it's a lot better place to be now'.

"We just keep trying to move forward and keep trying to strive for better things".

However, he began a nightmare run at the ninth with a bogey that was quickly followed by a double bogey at 10 and another dropped shot at 11.

He came up short with an eagle putt on the par-five sixth but another birdie there kept him one clear of Willett, who recovered from the dubious honour of recording the first bogey of the tournament after missing a short putt at the first, bounced back with three successive birdies from the fourth.

After spraying everything right, defending champion Jordan Spieth leaked two shots on his closing holes to finish even for the day.

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