The first round morning wave of tee times at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational is progressing through the back side, and as you would expect, a number of the world's top names are on the first page of the leaderboard. Carl Pettersson, the winner at Harbour Town this spring, leads at 4-under through 16 holes at Firestone's South Course. Pettersson went off the back side and picked up three birdies in his first seven holes, including a four on the monster par-5 16th.
There's a host of former major winners one shot back at 3-under, including Americans Bubba Watson and Keegan Bradley. Watson's game continues to round into form after his lengthy break after the win at Augusta. Golf was not a priority when he made an appearance at The Memorial in May, but he's improved as the summer wore on with good showings at Hartford and at Lytham. Watson, the bomb-and-gouger, is taking advantage of the par-5s at Firestone. He carded a birdie at No. 16 (one of three straight as he made the turn) and then picked up an eagle on the par-5 second hole.
Phil Mickelson is 1-under through 11 holes, tied with Cleveland-area native Jason Dufner. Englishmen Luke Donald and Lee Westwood are also draining birdies during their opening round. Westwood has moved to 3-under after a red number at No. 2 and Donald is 2-under after starting his round with three straight birdies.
Adam Scott, the defending champion who opened his week last year with a blistering 62, is even-par through his first 13 holes on Thursday. Scott is making his first appearance since his four-straight-bogey collapse at Lytham.
For a live leaderboard, visit Golf.com.
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