Yano fires 6-under 66; Ishikawa shoots 68 on 18th birthday

first_img IN FIVE EASY PIECES WITH TAKE 5 Azuma Yano made a solid start to his defense of the ANA Open on Thursday, firing a 6-under 66 to share the early lead with Kenichi Kuboya and Komei Oda.Yano, who claimed a four-shot victory to capture the second of his three career titles here last year, rolled down seven birdies against a lone bogey on Sapporo Golf Club’s Wattsu Course. “It feels today like I have started from where I left off here last year and I am playing a fifth round,” said Yano, who was the runnerup on last year’s money list.“It is good to see the expectations I had of myself today in the shape of this score,” added the 32-year-old.Takashi Kanemoto, Toru Taniguchi and 54-year-old veteran and four-time ANA Open winner Tsuneyuki Nakajima, who finished tied with Toshinori Muto for second last year, all shot 67s.Ryo Ishikawa enjoyed a bogey-free round on his 18th birthday, carding an eagle and two birdies en route to a 68 and an eight-way share of seventh.Muto was among a group of 12 golfers another stroke back.Shingo Katayama, Hiroyuki Fujita and Masashi “Jumbo” Ozaki closed at 2-under. center_img GET THE BEST OF THE JAPAN TIMESlast_img

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