DOHA, Qatar, Jan. 23 (UPI) —
Ricardo Santos shot a 7-under-par 65 Wednesday in taking the first-round lead of the European Tour’s Commercial Bank Qatar Masters.
Santos, the 2012 European Tour rookie of the year, had five of his eight birdies on the day on the front nine of the Doha Golf Club for a one-stroke lead over Alexandre Kaleka, Anthony Wall and Peter Whiteford. Five more players are at 5-under 67 and 13 others are just three strokes off the lead.
Defending champion Peter Lawrie is at even-par 72 and tied for 70th place.
Kaleka had seven birdies and one bogey while Wall and Whiteford each were bogey-free Wednesday.
Santos opened play on the second nine with a birdie at the 10th hole. His lone bogey came at the par-4 11th hole but he came back with a birdie at 12. He made the turn at 2-under after a birdie at 16.
He piled up five birdies on the front side, capping the round with birdies at Nos. 8 and 9 in taking the lead. He beat par on both par 3s and both par 5s on the side.