Graeme McDowell claimed a four under par 68 and has tied three behind leader Rafa Cabrera Bello while playing at the Arnold Palmer International that Rory Mcllroy opened with a 72. McDowell’s fellow Northern Irishman and defending champions Mcllroy needed two birdies to get back on the level.
Spanish Cabrera Bello carded eight birdies and finished two in the front of former USPGA champion Keegan Bradley. McDowell, who is 259th in the world rankings, currently shares third place in a group, which also includes Bubba Watson and Phil Mickelson. Italy Open winner Francesco Molinari’s final of 69 included a hole in one while he played at the seventh, and American DA points also axed the same hole as he claimed a 72.
McDowell recovered from two bogeys early on to get the turn in one under. After he took another shot at he 10th, the 2019 US Open champion moved to four under after he shot an eagle on par five 16th. Mcllroy, 29, birded on the third, but then faced bogeys on the fourth and fifth, and saw himself turn in one over par 37. The world number six managed to pull himself up to level par with a birdie on the 12th, but then went on top drop shots at the 13th and 15th. Despite this, he carded birdies on the 16th and 17th before seeing a final hole birdie from 25 feet out despite it almost certainly being another drop.
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