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Howell holds firm in windy South Korea
6:10pm Thursday 26th April 2012 in Golf
DAVID Howell is on course to make the cut at the Ballantine’s Championship despite an inconsistent opening round in South Korea.
Many players suffered in windy conditions at Blackstone Golf Club in Icheon while the undulating greens presented plenty of the competitors with a tough challenge.
That was reflected in the scoring on the first-round leaderboard with Broome Manor pro Howell just inside the top half after completing 18 holes in one-over-par.
Had the Swindon star been able to overcome wobbles in the middle and at the end of the round more quickly, then he would have found himself up with the leaders.
Howell picked up a shot at the second but that was wiped out by a bogey on the par-three third.
Matters then began to take a positive turn over the next five holes, and the Wiltshire man recorded gains at the par-five fifth and the par-four eighth.
However, a bogey at the ninth and two more dropped shots on successive holes saw Howell sink back to one-over-par for the day.
The Swindonian was having a good day on the par fours and this continued as he dropped in birdies at the 12th and 14th, to move back to one-under.
But the round ended on a sour note on the 17th and 18th as Howell dropped shots on both, with a six at the last proving a particular frustration.
Play was suspended today due to bad light, but the club house lead was held by Frenchman Victor Dubuisson on four-under-par.
A group of five were two shots back which included England duo Paul Casey and Mark Foster.
Howell was due to tee off his second round at 4.40am GMT tomorrow morning (12.40pm local time). His playing partners are Pablo Martin and Min-kyu Han.