Lee Westwood cut a frustrated figure after letting slip a golden opportunity to stamp his mark on the 138th Open Championship at Turnberry.
The Ryder Cup star got off to a blistering start in ideal calm conditions on the west coast of Scotland as he birdied the first three holes and missed a short putt to go four under at the fourth.
A bogey at the seventh saw him turn in 33 but he eventually got to four under with birdies at the 11th and 15th only to put his approach in the burn at the next and take a double-bogey six.
“It's a fair assumption to say I left a few shots out there,” said the Englishman.
“Any time you birdie the first three holes is obviously a great start but I had a lot of chances from 15 to 20 feet all day.
“A 68 is probably as bad as it could have been but in the first round of a major you can only play your way out of them.
“I probably would have taken that at the start of the day. I'm happy with the way I'm playing and the position I'm in.
“I'm looking at the positives already.”
Westwood was joined on two under by a resurgent David Howell.
“That was probably my best round since the final round [at Birkdale] last year,” admitted the 34-year-old.