James finds greens to his liking at Slaley

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Mark James has found his touch on the greens again – and proved it to take a one-shot lead on the first day of ISPS Handa PGA Seniors Championship at De Vere Slaley Hall yesterday.

The 58-year-old posted a brilliant, five-under-par 67 to bolster hopes of a first European Senior Tour success in three years, with fellow Brit Bob Cameron one shot behind.

“I suddenly started putting well on the last day last week,” said James, joint runner-up to Gary Wolstenholme in the Benahavis Senior Masters.

“It came out of nowhere really. Today the stroke was great. It felt simple, from three feet it felt pure, easy and rhythmical. That’s not that normal for me. It makes a huge difference to my game if I start putting well.

“Round this course, 67 is very good. I’ve not got a good record around here so I need every inch out of every round.”

Defending champion Andrew Oldcorn carded a level par 72, as did Carl Mason, Wolstenholme and Barry Lane.

Play continues today, concluding tomorrow and Sunday. Admission is free, with a downloadable ticket available at devere-hotels.co.uk/pga-seniors