Players Championship R1: McIlroy, Clark and Schauffele share lead

Rory McIlroy, Xander Schauffele and Wyndham Clark all made excellent starts to the 2014 Players Championship at TPC Sawgrass in Florida.

Players Championship R1: McIlroy, Clark and Schauffele share lead
Players Championship R1: McIlroy, Clark and Schauffele share lead

Players Championship round one leaderboard

  • W. Clark, X. Schauffele, R. McIlroy -7
  • N. Taylor, M. Fitzpatrick -6
  • T. Hoge, J. Day, L. Aberg, M. Homa, S. Scheffler, W. Clark, M. McNealy -5

Selected others:

  • H. Matsuyama -3, T. Fleetwood -2, R. Fowler E, J. Thomas -1, V. Hovland +1, S. Lowry +1, J. Spieth +2

Rory McIlroy, Xander Schauffele and Wyndham Clark shared the lead after 18 holes of the 2024 Players Championship

McIlroy, Schauffele and Clark all returned scorecards of 7-under 65 at the PGA Tour's flagship event. 

The Northern Irishman raced out of the blocks at TPC Sawgrass by making birdie on four of his first five holes. 

He dropped a shot at the 18th (his ninth of the day) after finding water off the tee. 

And he put four more circles on his scorecard to end the day at the summit alongside the two American players. 

His round was marred, however, due to a rules debate with Jordan Spieth

That debate occurred on the par-4 seventh hole after McIlroy again found water off the tee.

McIlroy was adamant his golf ball pitched above the red hazard line before it bounced off the bank and found a watery grave. 

Spieth wasn't so sure and also appeared to question one of McIlroy's earlier drops. 

For his part McIlroy insisted his conscience was clean and claimed he would never play fast and loose with the rules.

Elsewhere, world number one Scottie Scheffler didn't have his best stuff but still managed to card an opening round of 5-under 67 to finish the day inside the top-10. 

Scheffler is attempting to become the first player ever to defend the Players Championship. 

What they said...

Rory McIlroy

"I'm not sure how the strokes gained approach stats look like, but it's probably been one of my best days in a while, which is really nice.
"The feeling is good with the irons, and the feeling with the driver and the 3-wood is just a little bit different, but as long as I remind myself on the tee box that okay, this is a wood, and I get on the fairway, and this is an iron, and I've got two different feels and two different thoughts, then it's okay.
"Yeah, much, much improved on the approach play today, which was nice to see."

Xander Schauffele

"Pretty confident with where my game's at, and it's nice to see -- I've been struggling with the putter a little bit, but it was nice to see some putts go in from distance today and it's just day one."

Scottie Scheffler

"Yeah, it felt fairly stress free. I had the really good par there on 18. Outside of the start I played a lot of really good golf. It's nice to only have one bogey around this place and hopefully continue to do more of that the next few days."

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