In-form Schwab makes fast start at British Masters

By Chris Myson 13 May 2021 4
In-form Schwab makes fast start at British Masters

Matthias Schwab set the early pace at the British Masters by posting an impressive opening-round 66, with tournament host Danny Willett among the chasing pack at the Belfry.

In-form Schwab, who has three top 10s in his last four events but is yet to win on the European Tour, had seven birdies and just one dropped shot.

The Austrian picked up strokes at 16, 17 and 18 in a fast finish to take the tournament lead at six under par.

Schwab said: "I don't know exactly what I need to do to make these good weeks great weeks because if I knew I would have done that already! 

"But it has been a solid start to the season with some really nice finishes. The top 10s are nice and I'm just trying to do the same going forward and hopefully it [winning one] will just happen. 

"I don't think I need to change a whole lot because the game is feeling really solid and this was a really solid day." 

Schwab is one shot clear of Calum Hill and two ahead of a nine-man group at four under which includes his compatriot and seven-time European Tour winner Bernd Wiesberger, who had an eagle at 17.

Wiesberger is in contention despite finding the water twice.

Assessing conditions, second-placed Hill said: "You have to drive it quite well, there are a lot of demanding tee shots.

"There are a few bits that you can catch yourself out going to the greens but it is a good test of golf."

Willett is among those at three under, though he will rue a costly bogey at the 18th that stopped him from being two adrift overnight.

Pre-tournament favourite Robert Macintyre is at one under after a quiet first round, while defending champion Renato Paratore is at one over.

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Chris Myson