Henry shoots course record

US Tour

JJ Henry carded a flawless 11-under par 60 to claim a one-stroke lead after the first round of the PGA Tour’s Shriners’ Hospital Open on Thursday.

The 38-year-old rolled in a 50-foot eagle putt on his final hole – the par-five ninth – to lead Andres Romero by one shot after the first round at TPC Summerlin.

“It was one of those days,” Henry said after a day during which low-scoring was comparatively easy.

“There wasn’t much wind and the greens were pretty soft. It was nice to make that putt on the last hole to make lunch taste that much better.

“I’ve always felt like I’ve been a pretty good ball-striker, and when I make some putts I seem to climb the board.”

Argentinean Andres Romero made six birdies and two eagles in his flawless 10-under par round of 61.

Romero even had an opportunity to match Henry’s score, but missed a 29-foot putt on his final hole. Nevertheless, it was the 2008 PGA Tour rookie of the year’s lowest ever score.

“I was feeling very good this week, my swing was there, I was hitting the ball well and I had a really good round,” the 32-year-old admitted.

“I thought I was going to finish leader but unfortunately Henry had one more birdie.”

Two strokes further behind on eight-under are American trio James Driscoll, Jonathan Byrd and Jeff Overton, while 2012 US Open champion Webb Simpson is another stroke further behind.

A large group of players – including American quartet Bryce Molder, Scott Brown, Heath Slocum and Chesson Hadley, Canada’s Stephen Ames and Australia’s John Senden – finished the first round on six-under.

Zach Johnson, who is the highest-ranked player in the field, had to settle for a two-under par 69.

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