Golf: Harris English leads in storm-hit WGC-Cadillac C'ship as Woods struggles

American Harris English grabbed the clubhouse lead while world No. 1 Tiger Woods struggled on Thursday, March 6, 2014, until darkness halted the first round of the storm-hit WGC-Cadillac Championship. -- PHOTO: AFP
American Harris English grabbed the clubhouse lead while world No. 1 Tiger Woods struggled on Thursday, March 6, 2014, until darkness halted the first round of the storm-hit WGC-Cadillac Championship. -- PHOTO: AFP

MIAMI (AFP) - American Harris English grabbed the clubhouse lead while world No. 1 Tiger Woods struggled on Thursday until darkness halted the first round of the storm-hit WGC-Cadillac Championship.

English fired a three-under-par 69 and was among only six players to complete 18 holes at Doral's revamped Blue Monster course, as a severe storm stopped play in the afternoon.

"I really started hitting my driver well. That first nine was really tough. The wind got going," he said. "I kind of got rolling early on the second side."

Woods, who withdrew in the final round from last week's PGA Tour Honda Classic with back spasms, was in joint-47th spot on two-over 74 when play was halted, having just made a bogey at the par-five 10th by missing an eight-foot par putt.

Facing the prospect of playing 26 holes on Friday, he said: "Should be a long day for all of us. Hopefully I can get back out there in the morning, play well and work back to even par by the end of the first round, then shoot a low one in the afternoon."

English, 24, won his first USPGA title last year at Memphis and took his second win last November at Mayakoba.

Reigning Masters champion Adam Scott, who can overtake Woods for the top ranking spot with a win this week, was at two under after 10 holes thanks to birdies at the par-five eighth and par-three ninth.

Among those with Scott in a share of sixth were South Africans Charl Schwartzel and Louis Oosthuizen and Americans Zach Johnson, Russell Henley, Matt Kuchar and Dustin Johnson.

Rory McIlroy was enduring a roller coaster day that saw him with five birdies and four bogeys to stand one-under with four holes remaining.

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