Edfors leads inaugural Volvo Golf Champions

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, Last Updated: 11:12 AM ET

KINGDOM OF BAHRAIN, Bahrain -- Johan Edfors fired an eight-under 64 to take the lead after the first round of the Volvo Golf Champions, a new tournament on the European Tour.

Edfors had nine birdies and a bogey to take a two-stroke lead at The Royal Golf Club's Montgomerie Course, which was designed by Colin Montgomerie, who is playing in this event. The course opened in 2009.

It is the sixth career first-round lead for Edfors on the European Tour and first since the 2009 Abu Dhabi Golf Championship, where he finished fifth.

Edfors is looking for his fourth career victory and first since 2006, the year in which he posted all three wins on the European Tour. He hasn't cracked the top-10 in any of his last six appearances.

"I think I am a lot better player than five years ago, but the results have not really shown that," Edfors said.

Four players are tied for second at six-under 66, including Pablo Larrazabal, Peter Hanson, Francesco Molinari and Graeme Storm. Another eight players are tied for sixth at minus-five.

Montgomerie finished at even-par 72.

Edfors was consistent throughout the day, getting into a groove early and never letting up.

The Swede birdied the 10th hole to start his round, then moved to minus-three with consecutive birdies at 14 and 15. His only bogey came on the par-three 16th, but he quickly made up for it with a birdie at No. 17 to make the turn at three-under.

Edfors birdied the first to begin his last nine holes, and added another birdie at the third before two straight pars. He completed his round with three birdies in four holes, including on Nos. 8 and 9 to extend his lead.

"It's all up to where they put the flags here," Edfors said. "I had a bunch of chances from around 15 feet and holed a few of them."

Molinari is one of five top-20 players in the world to participate in this event, and he had seven birdies and a bogey in his solid round.

There were only six eagles made by the entire 98-player field, and all but one came at a par-five. Pablo Martin, who shot an even-par 72, made his second shot at the par-4 11th.

NOTES: The European Tour is making its first ever visit to the Kingdom of Bahrain, which brings the total number of destinations the tour has visited to 41...This is the first of three new events on the 2011 schedule. The Sicilian Open Golf will be played in March and the Iskandar Johor Open will take place in November...James Kingston was the only player to eagle the par-five 13th. Kingston is among the group of eight at five-under along with Paul Casey, Sergio Garcia, Richard Green, Matteo Manassero, Alexander Noren, Alvaro Quiros and Milkha Jeev Singh.


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