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There is plenty more to come: Ian Poulter


Ian Poulter of England

Ian Poulter of England

David Cannon

Ian Poulter of England

Ian Poulter admitted he would have been disappointed had he not finished under par, having played so well without creating many chances, in his first round of the 140th Open.

The Ryder Cup star's two birdies at the par-three 16th and 17th ensured he finished one under with a 69, leaving him satisfied there is plenty more to come over the next three days.

"I'm happy with the finish," said the 35-year-old.

"It would have been disappointing to finish today over par with the shots that I executed on the golf course.

"I couldn't have asked to hit the ball any better. There were a couple of par saves but apart from that it was pretty flawless.

"The way I've played and the shots I've hit - and the tough shots I've hit - I'm very happy.

"I definitely think I've got a chance if I play like I did today.

"I don't feel the need to go to the range to do any work."

Poulter was four behind early leader Thomas Bjorn and the Englishman was not surprised someone had carded a 65 - he was just frustrated it was not him.

"If I had holed a few putts today I would have felt pretty happy walking off the golf course five under par to be honest," he added.

"I think I had my chances to get to that number. I actually felt it (a 65) was there."

Compatriot Paul Casey, who was disappointed with his four-over 74, revealed he has been struggling with a problem with the big toe on his right foot and is scheduled to have an MRI scan after the Open.

"I've got an MRI next week because my right toe has been extremely painful for three months and has caused a lot of issues with the swing because I'm putting all my weight on my heels," he said.

"The game has not been where I wanted it and that might be a big part of it.

"I've had blood tests and x-rays - it wasn't gout as I seriously thought it might be."

Belfast Telegraph