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Robert Allenby leads Asia Pacific Classic
Australia’s Robert Allenby shot an 8-under 63 to take a one-stroke lead after the first round of the Asia Pacific Classic at Malaysia’s Mines Resort and Golf Club on Thursday.

Allenby birdied four of the first six holes and three of the last four in a bogey-free round that took him one ahead of Venezuela’s Jhonattan Vegas on the opening day.

"I got away with a nice par on the 18th. I made lots of nice putts and hit the ball really well all day," Allenby said. "I had just one wayward tee shot at the last, but I made a good par to save at the last."

Without win since the 2009 Australia Masters, Allenby was a captain’s pick for the upcoming Presidents Cup at Royal Melbourne, a selection that Fred Couples has criticized in retaliation for the furore surrounding the inclusion of Tiger Woods.

"I've been playing well for a while, but I just haven't really put the scores on the board," Allenby said.

"I've been making a lot of birdies, but a few others have been slipping in there. So to have a bogey-free round and to shoot 8 under around here is a great score."

"I had a really good round and hit the ball well," said Vegas, the PGA Tour rookie who won the Bob Hope Classic in January.

"I felt like I hit a lot of good putts as well. Hopefully, I can keep the momentum going for the next three days."

Mark Wilson, Stewart Cink, Jeff Overton, Scott Stallings and John Senden were four strokes back at 67. Defending champion Ben Crane shot a 69.

The winner will receive $1.3 million from the $6.1 million purse.

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