|-5 C Syme (Sco), J Smith (Eng); -3 K Kitayama (USA), C Shinkwin (Eng), S Soderberg (Swe), R Macintyre (Scot)|
|Selected others: +1 O Farr (Wal); +4 R Enoch (Wal), T Bjorn (Den); +5 P Price (Wal),|
Scotland’s Connor Syme and England’s Jordan Smith are tied for the lead at the Wales Open after the first round.
The tournament at Newport’s Celtic Manor, the host of the 2010 Ryder Cup, ran for 15 successive years and has returned after a hiatus since 2014.
The event is the second to be staged at the Celtic Manor in successive weeks after the Celtic Classic.
At least four spots at Winged Foot for next month’s US Open are still up for grabs at this week’s tournament.
A tight leaderboard means plenty of players remain in contention, with Syme and Smith holding a two-shot advantage after rounds of 66.
With traditional qualifying events cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, the USGA made 10 places in the US Open available to the top points earners from the first five events of the European Tour’s UK Swing.
England’s Sam Horsfield, who won the Hero Open and last week’s Celtic Classic, is assured a spot.
Belgium’s Thomas Detry, English Championship winner Andy Sullivan, Rasmus Hojgaard and British Masters champion Renato Paratoreare also heading to Winged Foot, with Spain’s Adrian Otaegui unlikely to be knocked out of the top 10.
Europe’s 2018 Ryder Cup-winning captain Thomas Bjorn managed to play despite completing a four-day charity walk of over 130 miles from Wentworth in Surrey to the Celtic Manor.