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England's Harry Hall surges clear at Colonial

Scheffler, who returned to the top of the world rankings after his share of second at the PGA Championship last Sunday, was slow to get going, making just one birdie on the front nine.

But three birdies after the turn elevated his round to leave him five shots behind Hall.

“I felt like I could have shot really low, and I feel like I could have went in the opposite direction too really fast,” he said.

“Anything in the red around Colonial is typically a pretty good score.” AFP

FORT WORTH – English journeyman Harry Hall was “in the moment” as he fired an eight-under 62 to grab a three-shot lead after the opening round of the PGA Tour’s Charles Schwab Challenge in Texas on Thursday.

Hall, ranked 197th in the world, carded eight birdies and 10 pars on a flawless bogey-free round to open up a commanding lead over American Harris English at Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth.

The 25-year-old rattled off five birdies on the front nine to reach the turn at five under before pocketing three more down the stretch – including a birdie on 18th – to create clear daylight at the top of the leaderboard.

“I was really in the moment out there and determined to play some good golf,” said Hall, whose round included a 30-foot putt to save par at the 15th and a brilliant chip-in on the 12th for a birdie.

But he admitted he was as surprised as anyone at his stellar round.

“I don’t tend to see anything coming,” he quipped.

“But I played some good golf this season, a couple of top 10s. This feels nice to be on the leaderboard.”

English had six birdies and a bogey in his 65, which put him a shot clear of Tom Hoge, Adam Schenk, Robby Shelton and Andrew Putnam.

He teed off on the 10th and capped his round with a good par save at the seventh followed by back-to-back birdies at the eighth and ninth.

“Good way to finish off the day,” English said.

“I knew kind of how difficult this course can play. It doesn’t seem that difficult, but it can always sneak up and bite you. I played tee to green great today. Putting was good today. Just kind of all around did what I was supposed to do.”

Fifteen other players, including world No. 1 Scottie Scheffler and defending champion Sam Burns – who beat Scheffler in a play-off at Colonial in 2022 – were a further shot back on three under after shooting 67s.