McIlroy shares lead at weather-hit BMW Championship

Thu Sep 4, 2014 8:34pm EDT
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By Ben Everill

CHERRY HILLS VILLAGE Colorado (Reuters) - World number one Rory McIlroy grabbed a three-way share of the clubhouse lead at the BMW Championship on Thursday before the opening round was suspended due to inclement weather.

McIlroy fired a three-under-par 67, putting him in a tie with American's Jordan Spieth and Gary Woodland before play was stopped with nine players yet to complete their rounds at Cherry Hills Country Club just outside Denver.

It was a surprising top score after plenty of competitors, including McIlroy, had suggested earlier in the week that much lower numbers could be attainable at the third of the PGA Tour's four lucrative FedExCup playoff events.

Americans Billy Horschel, Russell Henley, Chesson Hadley, Kevin Chappell and Matt Every plus two-times major winner Martin Kaymer of Germany, Canadian Graham DeLaet and Spain's Sergio Garcia were part of a group of nine players one shot back.

Defending FedExCup champion Henrik Stenson of Sweden was also at two-under with a hole to play.

The 25-year-old McIlroy started on the back nine, claiming birdies on the 12th and 17th holes for a respectable 34 before he caught fire at the turn.

Birdies at the first, second and third holes catapulted him into the lead at five-under before he capped his round with consecutive bogeys.

"I'm a little frustrated coming off the course, because I feel like it should have been better than what I finished," said McIlroy. "A sloppy bogey or two out there.   Continued...

Sep 4, 2014; Englewood, CO, USA; Rory McIlroy tees off from the 12th hole during the first round of the BMW Championship at Cherry Hills Country Club. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports