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Bradley Leads WGCHSBC Champions After First Round – SportsUntapped.com
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Added November 3rd, 2011 by Chalk

Bradley Leads WGC-HSBC Champions After First Round
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America’s most recent major champion Keegan Bradley shot a 7-under 65 on Thursday and leads the World Golf Championships-HSBC Champions in Shanghai, China by two strokes. Bo Van Pelt, who won last week in Malaysia, shared second place with Swedes Alex Noren and Fredrik Jacobson. For Bradley, a win in China might be enough to win the PGA Tour Player of the Year award.

World Number One Luke Donald is the clear front-runner for the award after winning the final fully official event of the season to claim the money title, but chose not to play in China this week so he could watch his wife give birth. “Maybe I made Luke nervous today,” Bradley speculated. “You know, all I’m trying to do is win this golf tournament. I know there’s a lot on the line, and there’s some awards to be won. I’m sure Luke is not very interested in this tournament. I’m sure he’s sleeping. But I hope to keep playing well and those fall where they fall.”

Rory McIlroy is also hoping to make up some ground on Donald this week in the European Tour’s money standings (Donald leads McIlroy by about $1.8 million there). Coming off a $2 million win last week at the Shanghai Masters that didn’t count towards the money standings, McIlroy started slow on Thursday and is five shots behind Bradley, but he’s still thinking about Donald. “It’s a huge event anyway, but for me, it’s a big event in the course of the season just because I feel like if I can play well this week, I can eat into Luke’s lead a little bit,” said McIlroy.

Bradley, a PGA Tour rookie this year, was also just happy by who he was paired with and that he played well in the same group as World Number Two Lee Westwood and Australia’s Adam Scott, who are both four shots back. “To go out in a strong group and play like that on this course is very rewarding and means a lot to me,” said Bradley.

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