Lahiri in four-way share of PGA lead

Anirban Lahiri in first-round action at the CareerBuilder Challenge

Lahiri won European Tour events in Malaysia and India last year that were co-sanctioned with the Asian Tour

India’s Anirban Lahiri carded eight birdies to claim a four-way share of the lead after the opening round of the CareerBuilder Challenge in California.

The 28-year-old world number 41 did not drop a shot in his eight-under-par 64 at the PGA West course in La Quinta.

Three Americans – 2013 US PGA champion Jason Dufner, 49-year-old Jerry Kelly and ex-US Ryder Cup player Jeff Overton – also hit 64s, one clear of the field.

Five-time major winner Phil Mickelson had an eagle in a 68 and is four back.

In his first competitive round since October, Mickelson holed a 96-yard shot for eagle at the par four eighth hole, and chipped in from just off the ninth green to return his lowest score at the La Quinta Country Club for a decade.

“I felt good with my game. I didn’t feel like I was fighting it. I was able to kind of let it go,” said the 45-year-old, who recently began working with new swing coach Andrew Getson.

Lahiri, who last October became the first golfer from India to play at the Presidents Cup, has won twice on the European Tour and has a best PGA Tour finish when he was tied for fifth at last year’s PGA Championship.

Kelly, who will qualify for the Champions Tour when he reaches his 50th birthday in November, carded two eagles at par fives after hitting three woods to within 15 feet.

Defending champion Bill Haas holed his second shot for an eagle at the par four first and posted a 66 to sit in an 11-way tie for seventh, but England’s former world number one Luke Donald had a level par 72 after mixing four birdies with four dropped shots.

The La Quinta Country Club is one of three venues used for the event, which also takes place at the PGA West’s Nicklaus Tournament Course and the TPC Stadium Course.

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