Justin Thomas fires 63 to lead early at CJ Cup @ Nine Bridges

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Justin Thomas fires 63 to lead early at CJ Cup @ Nine Bridges

PGA Tour

Justin Thomas fires 63 to lead early at CJ Cup @ Nine Bridges

Here is a recap of the first round of the CJ Cup @ Nine Bridges at Nine Bridges Golf Club in Jeju Island, South Korea:

LEADING: It may’ve come a week later than we expected, but Justin Thomas is once again on top of a PGA Tour leaderboard.

Thomas bogeyed his opening hole, the 10th, Thursday but then went off from there. An eagle at 12 kicked things in the right direction, and Thomas then torched Nine Bridges Golf Club with a birdie-birdie-birdie-birdie-eagle finish to his first nine holes.

Out in 29, Thomas cooled on his back nine but still made three birdies against one bogey. His birdie at the last gave him a 9-under 63 and a three-shot lead.

Last week’s CIMB Classic was a disappointment for the PGA Tour Player of the Year, as Thomas entered the two-time defending champion but could only muster a T-17 finish this time.

After a monumental five win 2016-17 season, Thomas likely didn’t want to start that way. Well, it only took one week to get back on track.

CHASING: The inaugural event sees a load of players in a tie for second at 6 under. Among those are Patrick Reed, Marc Leishman, Gavin Kyle Green, Scott Brown and Chez Reavie.

Tony Finau and Ollie Schniederjans are among those T-7 at 5 under.

SHOT OF THE DAY: Part of Thomas’ mid-round red-number barrage was this birdie hole-out at the 15th.

QUOTABLE: “”It was kind of a weird day. It started off with a really, really bad bogey. And then I had a seven-hole stretch there where I basically kind of went unconscious. That was pretty much most of my round.” – Justin Thomas

SHORT SHOTS: Jason Day fires a 4-under 68 to sit T-12. … Pat Perez, last week’s champion, opens with a solid 3-under 69, and he’s T-20. … Xander Schauffele is also 3 under. … Ian Poulter fires a 71 to find himself tied for 38th at 1 under.

UP NEXT: Golf Channel will air second-round coverage Thursday night and early Friday morning from 10 p.m.-2 a.m. Eastern. Follow all the action on Golfweek.com and our Facebook and Twitter feeds.

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