McDowell red-hot on the greens in San Antonio - 22 putts

McDowell red-hot on the greens in San Antonio - 22 putts
Graeme McDowell

Graeme McDowell

Graeme McDowell believes he can hole just about anything on the greens at TPC San Antonio's Oak Course after taking just 22 putts in an opening 68 in the Valero Texas Open

The 37-year old from Portrush withdrew injured after just nine holes of the first round on his only previous experience at the event two years ago.

He was ranked 23rd in the world at the time but is now 83rd and seeking his first win since the 2015 OHL Classic at Mayakoba and he's certainly playing well enough to have a chance.

"I swung the club really well today to be honest," McDowell said after a four-under par round that left him two shots behind early leader Branden Grace.

"I had a couple of missed iron shots but the putter, as cold as it was at Harbour Town last week, it was hot today in San Antonio. 

"This is only my second time here but I've always liked the way this course sets up for me. I'm obviously happy to get off to a nice start."

McDowell made seven birdies, holing putts from 23 feet, four feet, nine feet, 13 feet, 10 feet and eight feet at the second, third, eighth, 10th, 13th and 14th before holing from off the green at the 17th.

He birdied the three of the four par-fives and while there were bogeys at the fourth, 11th and 18th, he was happy with his day.

"I agree [the par fives are tough]. Number 18 was playing long but some decent wedge play early on to set up some chances," McDowell said after a round that featured 12 single putts, including a run of seven in a row on the back nine. 

"But I felt really good on the greens and if can give myself a look at anything inside 30 feet I feel pretty good."

It was no surprise that McDowell was ranked first for strokes gained on the greens.