Tommy Fleetwood sets early pace as Rory McIlroy makes solid return

Home > News > Tommy Fleetwood sets early pace as Rory McIlroy makes solid return
Birthday boy McIlroy finds comfort in first round since US Masters disappointment
Posted on
May 5, 2023
The Editorial Team in
Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

Birdies on the closing two holes gave Tommy Fleetwood the first round lead in the Wells Fargo Championship as Rory McIlroy made solid return to action.

Fleetwood shot a bogey-free 65 as he continued his pursuit of a first PGA Tour title, one better than a group on five under – Xander Schauffele, Kevin Streelman, Taylor Moore, KH Lee and Ryan Palmer.

McIlroy, playing for the first time since missing the cut at the US Masters, is three strokes behind after an opening 68 on his 34th birthday at Quail Hollow.

Fleetwood has won six times on the DP World Tour, but the Englishman is still chasing a first title in the US.

“I just have to keep going and wait for those really big results and hopefully start contending again up at the top of the leaderboard,” said Fleetwood. “We’ll see what we can do from there.”

McIlroy has won three times at Quail Hollow with nine top 10 finishes in 11 starts, but he admitted not touching his clubs for more than two weeks after the disappointment at the Masters.

“I feel relaxed here,” he said. “It’s just a level of comfort at this golf course and at this club that I probably don’t have any other venue.

“I’ve played here so many times I know where to miss it. I missed a few greens but I didn’t feel like I hit the ball that badly.

“It was just really nice to be out there again… nice to feel like I played well. I didn’t want to spend my birthday afternoon grinding on the range.”

Schaufelle had looked on course to set the early pace, but two bogeys in Quail Hollow’s notorious closing three holes – dubbed the “Green Mile” – left him one off the lead.

US Open champion Matt Fitzpatrick finished a stroke behind playing partners McIlroy and Justin Thomas, his 69 matched by fellow Englishman Tyrell Hatton with defending champion Max Homa opening with a 70.

English trio Matt Wallace, Callum Tarren and Harry Hall also opened with one-under-par 70s while Tony Finau, winner in Mexico last week, shot a 71.

Pos.PlayerTo ParR1
1Tommy Fleetwood-665
T2Kevin Streelman-566
T2K.H. Lee-566
T2Taylor Moore-566
T2Xander Schauffele-566
T2Ryan Palmer-566
T7Patrick Cantlay-467
T7Sahith Theegala-467
T7Kramer Hickok-467
T7Tom Kim-467
T7Chris Kirk-467
T7Adam Scott-467
T7Wyndham Clark-467
T7Matthew NeSmith-467
T7Emiliano Grillo-467
T16Beau Hossler-368
T16Rory McIlroy-368
T16Adam Svensson-368
T16C.T. Pan-368
T16Justin Thomas-368
T16J.J. Spaun-368
T16Si Woo Kim-368
T16Nate Lashley-368
T16Michael Kim-368
T25Keith Mitchell-269
T25Matt Fitzpatrick-269
T25Seamus Power-269
T25Gary Woodland-269
T25Sungjae Im-269
T25Lucas Glover-269
T25Troy Merritt-269
T25Chesson Hadley-269
T25Chad Ramey-269
T25Tyrrell Hatton-269
T25Davis Thompson-269
T36Ryan Armour-170
T36Stephan Jaeger-170
T36Max Homa-170
T36Corey Conners-170
T36Matt Wallace-170
T36Austin Eckroat-170
T36Rory Sabbatini-170
T36Nick Watney-170
T36Callum Tarren-170
T36Sam Stevens-170
T36Keegan Bradley-170
T36Brian Harman-170
T36Paul Haley II-170
T36Trey Mullinax-170
T36Cameron Champ-170
T36Taylor Pendrith-170
T36Henrik Norlander-170
T36S.H. Kim-170
T36Max McGreevy-170
T36Harry Hall-170
T36MJ Daffue-170
T36Trace Crowe-170
T58Robby SheltonPar71
T58Will GordonPar71
T58Denny McCarthyPar71
T58Martin LairdPar71
T58Tony FinauPar71
T58Harris EnglishPar71
T58Cam DavisPar71
T58Webb SimpsonPar71
T58Nick HardyPar71
T58Justin LowerPar71
T58Doug GhimPar71
T58Eric ColePar71
T58Brendon ToddPar71
T58Rickie FowlerPar71
T58Stewart CinkPar71
T58Viktor HovlandPar71
T58Cameron YoungPar71
T58Sam BurnsPar71
T58David LingmerthPar71
T58Jason DufnerPar71
T58Ryan ColePar71
T79Hayden Buckley+172
T79Mark Hubbard+172
T79Joel Dahmen+172
T79Sepp Straka+172
T79Jason Day+172
T79Francesco Molinari+172
T79Garrick Higgo+172
T79Robert Streb+172
T79Zac Blair+172
T79Joseph Bramlett+172
T79Jimmy Walker+172
T79James Hahn+172
T79Aaron Rai+172
T79Ryan Gerard+172
T79Justin Suh+172
T79Ben Taylor+172
T79Jordan Spieth+172
T79Shane Lowry+172
T79Matt Kuchar+172
T79Brent Grant+172
T79Akshay Bhatia+172
T79Dylan Wu+172
T101Byeong Hun An+273
T101Erik van Rooyen+273
T101Chez Reavie+273
T101J.T. Poston+273
T101Alex Smalley+273
T101Scott Piercy+273
T101Kevin Tway+273
T101Carson Young+273
T101Willie Mack III+273
T101Collin Morikawa+273
T101Richy Werenski+273
T112Adam Long+374
T112Lee Hodges+374
T112Luke List+374
T112Nico Echavarria+374
T112Mackenzie Hughes+374
T112Adam Hadwin+374
T112Harrison Endycott+374
T112Austin Greaser(a)+374
T112Patrick Rodgers+374
T112Danny Willett+374
T112Alex Noren+374
T112Tyler Duncan+374
T112Zach Johnson+374
T112Adam Schenk+374
T112Greyson Sigg+374
T112Morgan Deneen+374
T128Ryan Moore+475
T128Michael Thompson+475
T128Doc Redman+475
T128Russell Knox+475
T128Alejandro Tosti+475
T128David Lipsky+475
T134Taylor Montgomery+576
T134Jim Herman+576
T134Trevor Cone+576
T134Austin Smotherman+576
T134Matthias Schwab+576
T134Kurt Kitayama+576
T134Lanto Griffin+576
T134Andrew Landry+576
T134Ben Griffin+576
T143Austin Cook+677
T143Kelly Kraft+677
T143Dylan Frittelli+677
T143Patton Kizzire+677
T143Sam Ryder+677
T143Marcus Byrd+677
149Davis Riley+778
T150Ben Martin+879
T150Pierceson Coody+879
T150Danny Guise+879
153Tyson Alexander+1081
154Quinn Riley+1182
W/DPeter Malnati--
W/DAndrew Putnam--
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