October 24 2013
By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM
Ryan Moore bogeyed his first hole but he still managed to shoot a tournament- and course-record 63 on the West Course at Kuala Lumpur Country Club to grab the lead at the CIMB Classic.
Moore quickly shook off the miscue and birdied 10 of his final 15 holes -- including all four par 3s -- to open a two-stroke advantage over Keegan Bradley. He hit 11 of 14 fairways and all but three greens in regulation while using 25 putts.
"First and foremost on this golf course, you gotta put it in the fairway," Moore said. "The fairways are very small, and I started out doing that really well. I hit it in the fairway, and with ball in hand and the ability to clean the ball and give yourself a perfect lie every time, that's a huge advantage.
"So I was able to hit some good iron shots and started rolling in some putts kind of late in my first nine and just kind of kept it rolling the whole day."
Moore has a solid history with the first-round lead. A little more than a year ago, he opened with a 61 at the Shriners Hospital for Children Open and went on to win the tournament. The other three times Moore has led after the first round he's finished no lower than sixth.
"It's always great to get off to a good start and get comfortable on a golf course," Moore said. "Especially one that you haven't played before, and to go hit it in the right places, put it in the fairway, putting it on the greens, and for me it was huge just to make some putts."
Moore made his third visit to Malaysia with some momentum after tying for ninth in his title defense in his adopted hometown of Las Vegas last week.
"It was a really nice start to come out, have a top-10," Moore said. "... And you know, to get some good positive momentum, play some decent golf. I didn't play amazing, but had a good solid week. So to roll that into this week, I think it definitely helped, you know, just to get a little positive momentum."