Spieth tied at the top

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Jordan Spieth carded a seven-under-par 66 to join a four-way tie for the lead after the first round of the PGA Tour’s Tournament of Champions on Friday.

Spieth made a 12-footer for birdie on the final hole to join Michael Thompson, Chris Kirk and Webb Simpson at the top of the leaderboard in Kapalua.

“It’s a course that I shouldn’t make a lot of bogeys on if you keep the ball in play and just think your way around the course,” Spieth told reporters after his round.

“Ultimately, I did some good preparation and did a lot of hard work the last two or three weeks getting ready for today, and now just happy to be in good position after the first round.”

One stroke behind the leaders on six-under are PGA champion Jason Dufner, Kevin Streelman, Zach Johnson and Ryan Moore.

Matt Kuchar was another stroke further behind after carding a first round 68.

Defending champion Dustin Johnson and Masters winner Adam Scott – who recently won twice in Australia were among a group of players on two-under after rounds of 70.

Despite the only three shots separating the top 10 players after the first round, most of the attention will be on Spieth, who had a remarkable rookie season, winning the John Deere Classic and finishing in seventh place on the FedEx Cup standings, which earned him a President’s Cup berth.

“It’s almost like a vacation tournament in a sense,” Spieth continued.

“It’s been an awesome week so far. Obviously, I’m here for this reason, and I don’t have my family here with me. So there’s definitely more of an emphasis on golf than maybe some other guys are putting into it here. Maybe that’s an advantage.”

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