Lomas leads by one in Mallorca

Updated: October 20, 2005, 3:06 PM ET
Associated Press

SON SERVERA, Mallorca -- Jonathan Lomas shot a 5-under 65 to take a one-stroke lead Thursday over Gary Murphy and Mark Foster after the first round of the Mallorca Classic.

Miguel Angel Jimenez, the winner of this event two years ago, Paul Broadhurst, Sam Little, John Bickerton and Simon Khan were another stroke back after 67s. The favorite and defending champion Sergio Garcia shot 69.

Despite the distance of the 6,676-yard layout at Pula Golf Club, players found the course largely unchanged despite a partial redesign by Jose Maria Olazabal.

"The scores are about the same as the last two years," Olazabal said. "It's a tough course with a lot of demanding shots."

Many of the changes were made to increase the size of the greens.

"I don't think the changes made it tougher. I think they are fair," said Olazabal, who shot 69. "You still have to hit good shots."

Lomas declined interviews after the match, saying he would talk on Sunday. European Tour officials suggested he could face a fine for skipping post-match interviews.

Lomas' caddie told reporters he had only 25 putts, one for a 50-foot birdie on the 15th hole.

Murphy chipped in from 20 feet for a birdie at the 17th hole, his eighth hole, and rolled in a 12-foot putt for a birdie on his final hole.

"I need a top-two finish to get into Valderrama and I'm going for it," the Irishman said.

Murphy is 78th in the Order of Merit -- the European money list -- and needs to finish in the top 60 to play next week in the season-ending Volvo Masters at Valderrama.

Several players in the field are trying to cement their places in the top 115 on the money list, which allows them to keep their playing rights for next season.

Foster is one of them. Ranked No. 108, the Englishman needs a solid week.

"You try not to put pressure on yourself," he said.

European Ryder Cup captain Ian Woosnam injured his shoulder on the fifth hole and withdrew on the 17th.


Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press

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