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Charlie Wi heads field in Florida

Updated: Sunday, 11 Nov 2012 09:06 | Comments

Charlie Wi leads by a stroke in Florida
Charlie Wi leads by a stroke in Florida

Charlie Wi edged into a one-shot lead at the end of the first round of the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals Classic in Florida as he once again searches for his first PGA Tour win.

The South Korean's eight-under 64 on the Palm course featured eight birdies, including the final two holes, two bogeys and was highlighted by a 15-foot eagle putt at the par-five seventh.

That put Wi, who has not won in 183 PGA Tour starts, a stroke clear of America's Tommy Gainey and Camilo Villegas of Colombia.

The top 12, all at five under or better, each played their opening round on the Palm course.

Henrik Stenson of Sweden and American Charles Howell on four under were among the best of those who played the Magnolia course.

"The Palm course is a course where you need to score," leader Wi told www.pgatour.com. "All the par fives are reachable so I felt like I took advantage of them."

On his eagle, he added: "When I made [that], I felt like I had something special going today."

With players battling to be in the top 125 on the money list come Sunday to keep their tour card, Villegas was among the big winners. The Colombian started the day 150th but will make the grade if he keeps up his current position.

Scotland's Russell Knox led the European challenge with a six-under 66 on Palm to sit tied for fourth alongside Americans Brian Harman and Scott Stallings.

England's Gary Christian was one under on Palm for a share of 48th and will need to improve if he is to make the top 125.

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