The Swedish golfer Henric Sturehed is the first leader of the 57th Portuguese Open of the Challenge Tour, which kicked off today at the Morgado Golf Resort in Portimão, where Tiago Cruz played under par and was the best Portuguese.
Estoril’s professional completed the first lap in 24th place with 71 strokes (one below par) – thanks to four birdies (one below) at holes 1, 3, 7 and 14, and three bogeys ( one above), at 2, 8 and 18 -, the five to Henric Sturehed, who handed a card with 66 (six below).
“The greens were getting tougher and quicker from drying out. I was happy. The day was not easy and the field does not forgive a bad shot. I am pleased to have done well,” said Tiago Cruz, stressing that “focused” state.
Already Jose-Filipe Lima, runner-up of the Portuguese tournament and 11th in the ranking of the Challenge Tour, ended the inaugural round in 39th, with the pair, signing three birdies (9, 14 and 16 ) and so many bogeys (11, 13 and 15).
Like Lima, who is looking for a good result in the Algarve to cement his position in the top 15, following the Grand Final of the Challenge Tour in Palma de Mallorca, and securing the European Tour, Hugo Santos also made the pair.
The Algarve made a less consistent lap by recording four birdies (7, 9, 10 and 17), a pair of bogeys (13 and 18) and a double bogey (3).
Ricardo Santos, who is in fourth place in the ranking and was considered one of the favorites, starred in an unassertive debut and, following 77 strokes (five over par), is ‘sunk’ in 126th place.
Leading the only national Challenge Tour tournament, which is attended by 18 Portuguese golfers, is 29-year-old Swede Henric Sturehed, who has two fewer shots than Canadian Aaron Cockerill, Polish Adrian Meronk and German Christopher Mivis, seconds, with 67 strokes (five below).