Eamonn Darcy and Denis O'Sullivan are five shots off the pace after the first round of the Azores Senior Open.
Helped by a hot putter, Scotland’s Martin Gray hit a three-under par 69 to lead by a shot from American Chuck Milne at Batalha Golf Club in Sao Miguel, one of the nine Atlantic islands which form the Azores.
Darcy and O'Sullivan signed for two-over par 74s with Jimmy Heggarty on six over after a 78.
Gray putted brilliantly on the undulating greens, earning him the unlikely nickname of ‘Tiger’ from playing partner Delroy Cambridge.
Gray said: “I saved a couple of pars today and sank all the five footers, which meant I earned the nickname ‘Tiger’ from Delroy. It’ll be nice just to be in contention come Sunday afternoon, but there’s still an awful lot of golf to be played between now and then.”
69 M Gray (Sco)
70 C Milne (USA)
71 L Carbonetti (Arg); J Quiros (Esp); A Fernandez (Chi)
72 S Stull (USA); T Giedeon (Ger); S Ginn (Aus); B Boyd (USA); B Lincoln (RSA); M Pinero (Esp); D Hospital (Esp); J Rivero (Esp)
73 J Bruner (USA); K Spurgeon (Eng); N Job (Eng); D Merriman (Aus); C Rocca (Ita)
74 P Oakley (USA); Gordon J Brand (Eng); D Cambridge (Jam); E Darcy (Ire); G Encina (Chi); D Good (Aus); A Garrido (Esp); D O’Sullivan (Ire); J Hall (Eng);
75 J Benda (USA); S Martin (Sco); R Stelten (USA); H Carbonetti (Arg); J Van Wagenen (USA); J Chillas (Sco); M Miller (Sco); B Smit (RSA)
76 B Longmuir (Sco); I Mosey (Eng); G Banister (Aus); B Cameron (Eng); R Drummond (Sco); M Kierstenson (Eng);
77 J Mashego (RSA); B Larratt (Eng); E Rodriguez (Esp)
78 G Cali (Ita); N Clarke (RSA); M Galway (Eng); T Rastall (Eng); J Heggarty (NIR); D J Russell (Eng); C Mason (Eng); T Charnley (Eng); A Barrera (Arg); L Indio (Por)
79 T Allen (Eng); Martin Poxon (Eng); G Townhill (Eng); J P Sallat (Fre); B McColl (Sco)
80 H Woodrome (USA); M Bembridge (Eng); T Price (Wal); P Dugeny (Fra)
81 T Jones (USA); D Johnson (USA)
82 B Hardwick (Can)
83 M Thomas (USA); A Bownes (Eng); G Wintz (USA)
84 R Mann (Eng)
85 V Espirito Santo (Por)
86 V Garcia (Esp)