DP World Tour Championship, Dubai R1

Perez powers clear in Dubai

December 10-13
Earth Course, Jumeirah Golf Estates, Dubai
$8,000,000
Round 2, Round 3, Round 4


DP World Tour Championship, Dubai R1 -
(Getty Images)

Victor Perez took a one-stroke lead after the opening round of the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai, with the Frenchman chasing history at the fourth and final Rolex Series event of the year as he aims to become the first player from France to be crowned Race to Dubai Champion.


The 28-year-old has already enjoyed two runner-up finishes in Rolex Series events this year, with a top 15 result in the other, helping him to his current position in sixth spot in the Race to Dubai Rankings presented by Rolex.

Perez has one European Tour victory under his belt after claiming last year’s Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, and he is in the driving seat for a second victory and a maiden Rolex Series win after carding six birdies on the way to a five under par 67 on the Earth Course at Jumeirah Golf Estates.



“As always on these tough courses, tough pins today, they really put up a good setup with some of the pins, three or four from the edges. JP has been here a few times and he still didn’t see some of them. It was just about holing a few good putts, driving the ball well, doing everything fairly well but obviously making a few putts, which you need those type of days.

“In the position I’m in, I have nothing to lose. I have everything to gain. So for me it’s really a going-for-it mentality that I have to keep for four rounds. Obviously you still have to play proper golf and hit the right shots and sometimes take your medicine, but again, I have really nothing to lose, and it’s a matter of making a lot of birdies.”





Robert MacIntyre, Matthew Fitzpatrick and Erik van Rooyen share second spot on four under par, while two-time Major winner Martin Kaymer, three-time Rolex Series winner Tyrrell Hatton and 2017 Race to Dubai Champion Tommy Fleetwood are joined by young Finnish star Sami Välimäki on three under.

“There was no secret,” said van Rooyen. “Hit it straight, make some putts. I don’t feel like I putted the best even, so I guess the hitting was on point.

“I do, however, feel like it’s playing a tad softer than it has the last two years I’ve been here, so probably a bit more accessible, but still, it’s windy out there. They were all like three paces from the edge, so it’s not easy.”




Pos.
Player
To Par
R1
1
Victor Perez
-5
67
T2
Matthew Fitzpatrick
-4
68
T2
Robert MacIntyre
-4
68
T2
Erik van Rooyen
-4
68
T5
Tommy Fleetwood
-3
69
T5
Tyrrell Hatton
-3
69
T5
Martin Kaymer
-3
69
T5
Sami Valimaki
-3
69
T9
Sean Crocker
-2
70
T9
Jamie Donaldson
-2
70
T9
Gavin Kyle Green
-2
70
T9
Garrick Higgo
-2
70
T9
Jazz Janewattananond
-2
70
T9
Patrick Reed
-2
70
T9
Callum Shinkwin
-2
70
T9
Henrik Stenson
-2
70
T9
Lee Westwood
-2
70
T18
Adri Arnaus
-1
71
T18
Christiaan Bezuidenhout
-1
71
T18
Laurie Canter
-1
71
T18
George Coetzee
-1
71
T18
Viktor Hovland
-1
71
T18
Joost Luiten
-1
71
T18
Thomas Pieters
-1
71
T18
Andy Sullivan
-1
71
T26
Wil Besseling
E
72
T26
Jorge Campillo
E
72
T26
Branden Grace
E
72
T26
Masahiro Kawamura
E
72
T26
Collin Morikawa
E
72
T26
Shaun Norris
E
72
T26
Aaron Rai
E
72
T26
Matt Wallace
E
72
T26
Marc Warren
E
72
T26
Danny Willett
E
72
T36
Marcus Armitage
1
73
T36
Ross Fisher
1
73
T36
Pablo Larrazabal
1
73
T36
Graeme McDowell
1
73
T36
Robert Rock
1
73
T36
Brandon Stone
1
73
T36
Connor Syme
1
73
T43
Thomas Detry
2
74
T43
Joachim B. Hansen
2
74
T43
Scott Jamieson
2
74
T43
Matthieu Pavon
2
74
T43
Ian Poulter
2
74
T43
Kalle Samooja
2
74
T43
Jordan Smith
2
74
T50
John Catlin
3
75
T50
Grant Forrest
3
75
T50
Benjamin Hebert
3
75
T50
Sungjae Im
3
75
T50
Adrian Otaegui
3
75
T50
Renato Paratore
3
75
T50
Antoine Rozner
3
75
T57
Dean Burmester
4
76
T57
Rasmus Højgaard
4
76
T57
Marcus Kinhult
4
76
T57
Bernd Wiesberger
4
76
T61
Justin Harding
5
77
T61
Sam Horsfield
5
77
T63
Tom Lewis
6
78
T63
Eddie Pepperell
6
78
65
Wilco Nienaber
7
79