Sahith Theegala birdied seven of his final nine holes to take a one-shot lead after the first round of the PGA Tour season at The Sentry in Hawaii.
The American’s nine-under-par 64 in The Sentry event leads a group of five players, including major champions Collin Morikawa and Jason Day, plus FedEx champion Viktor Hovland.
Colombia’s Camillo Villegas and South Korean Sungjae Im are also on eight under, with world number one Scottie Scheffler, Xander Schauffele and Jordan Spieth among those a shot further adrift.
On a day of low scoring, Theegala reached the turn at three-under-par before six consecutive birdies catapulted him into the last – another at the last, giving him the top spot on his own after a bogey at the 16th.
Morikawa made six birdies and an eagle in his 65, while Hovland birdied seven of his last 10 holes.
Matt Wallace was the top English performer in the 59-strong field – made up of last year’s PGA Tour winners and top 50 in the FedEx Cup standings – with a 68, one better than Tyrell Hatton and Matt Fitzpatrick.
Tommy Fleetwood opened with a 70, while Justin Rose came home in 31 after going out in 40 to be two under.
The Sentry is the first event of the 2024 PGA TOUR Season and serves as the season-opening event on the PGA TOUR schedule for the first time since 2013. After ten wraparound seasons, the TOUR returns to a calendar year schedule, with 36 FedExCup Regular Season events followed by the FedExCup Playoffs and FedExCup Fall.
The Sentry is the first of eight Signature Events in 2024, which offer increased purse sizes ($20 million) and FedExCup points to the winner (700).
Eligible players for The Sentry are tournament winners in 2023 and players who finished in the top 50 in the FedExCup Playoffs and Eligibility Points List; 35 of the 37 tournament winners are in the field (all but Rory McIlroy and Jon Rahm) along with the 24 players who finished in the top 50 but did not win.