South Australia’s Max McCardle (pic) and NSW’s Neven Basic lead the field after the morning groups completed their first rounds in strengthening breezes at the Northern Territory PGA Championship – presented by Cazalys Palmerston.
Both players shot rounds of five-under 66 but did so in vastly different circumstances.
Last year's runner-up McCardle was the steadier of the two recording a five birdie, no bogey round, which was in stark contrast to Basic who mixed an eagle and six birdies with bogies at the 3rd, 14th and 16th.
The pair lead by a shot from South Australian Brad Moules and the Victorian trio of Deyen Lawson, Andrew Schoneville and Josh Younger.
The early form of McCardle, Basic and Lawson is testament to the fact that 'local knowledge' around the Palmerston layout is of great value, with all three players having enjoyed top-ten finishes in the 2016 event.
American John O’Toole shot a three-under 68 and was recently joined at that mark by defending champion Jordan Zunic, who was approaching the halfway mark in his round.
Thai players Wisut Artjanawat (pic) and Thitipat Phatam shot two-under par rounds of 69 and are among a group of players currently in a tie for ninth place.
Play continues at Palmerston with afternoon groups still on course.