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The 149th Open: Bryson DeChambeau rues driving display after opening-round 71 at Royal St George’s

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Louis Oosthuizen set the clubhouse target with a six-under 64 at The Open, with Bryson DeChambeau and defending champion Shane Lowry seven back after opening-round 71s – watch throughout the week live on Sky Sports’ dedicated Open channel

Bryson DeChambeau was disappointed with his start to The Open

Bryson DeChambeau was disappointed with his start to The Open

Bryson DeChambeau has lamented a disappointing display off the tee after making an erratic start to The Open at Royal St George’s.

The former US Open champion found just fairways on his way to an opening-round 71 on the Kent coast, mixing four birdies with five bogeys to find himself seven strokes behind early pacesetter Louis Oosthuizen.

DeChambeau hit several wayward drives into thick rough and was unable to build on a back-nine recovery that saw him post three consecutive birdies, with two bogeys over his final four holes seeing him end the day over par.

DeChambeau is making his first appearance on British soil since his physical transformation DeChambeau is making his first appearance on British soil since his physical transformation

“If I can hit it down the middle of the fairway, that’s great, but with the driver right now, the driver sucks,” DeChambeau said after his round. “It’s not a good face for me and we’re still trying to figure out how to make it good on the mis-h its.

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“I’m living on the razor’s edge like I’ve told people for a long time. When I did get it outside of the fairway, like in the first cut and whatnot, I catch jumpers out of there and I couldn’t control my wedges.

“It’s quite finicky for me because it’s a golf course that’s pretty short, and so when I hit driver and it doesn’t go in the fairway, it’s first cut or whatever, or it’s in the hay, it’s tough for me to get it out on to the green and control that.”

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DeChambeau is joined in the group on one over by defending champion Shane Lowry, who opened with back-to-back bogeys and also struggled from the tee box during an eventful first round.

“I’d say I played pretty average,” Lowry said. “I didn’t play my best golf. But then again, when you’re playing with Louis [Oosthuizen], who is shooting six under and playing great, it kind of makes you feel probably a little bit different!

Shane Lowry is looking to become the first back-to-back winner of The Open since Padraig Harrington Shane Lowry is looking to become the first back-to-back winner of The Open since Padraig Harrington

“I think if I would have parred the last and shot level par I would have been quite happy with myself going home this afternoon, but I didn’t. I got an unfortunate bounce and went into the bunker and made bogey. But I battled hard, I was quite proud of myself.

“I need to hit the ball in play better, especially with my driver. I didn’t hit many fairways with my driver. I did hit quite a few three-irons off the tees and I hit fairways, but you need to drive the ball in play. Playing this course out of the rough is not the place to be.”

Watch The 149th Open throughout the week live on Sky Sports’ dedicated channel – Sky Sports The Open. Live coverage continues on Friday from 6.30am.

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