Aaron Rai chasing first win shares lead in Canadian Open -
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Aaron Rai chasing first win shares lead in Canadian Open  

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Aaron Rai.

Khel Today Bureau 

Toronto, Canada: Aaron Rai of England shot 5-under 67 as he was part of a four-way lead at the RBC Canadian Open. Sharing the first day honours with Rai, whose grandparents were from India, were Corey Conners of Canada, Justin Lower and Chesson Hadley.

The top Asians were China’s Carl Yuan and Korean S.H. Kim. They were both at 68 to share fifth place alongside.

Akshay Bhatia, who has a Special Temporary membership was also impressive with 3-under 69 and was T-14 while another American-Indian Sahith Theegala with 73 was T-84th and in danger of missing the cut.

Kim continued to impress in his rookie season. He holds eight top-25 finishes, and is chasing for a first PGA TOUR victory.

Yuan produced some of his best golf in months with a stellar 4-under 68 leaving him one shot off the lead on a jam-packed leader board. The 26-year-old Yuan has been struggling to find his form in his rookie season on the PGA TOUR with only five made cuts in 16 starts but opted for a carefree approach which saw him free-wheel his way to seven birdies at Oakdale Golf and Country Club in Toronto.

Two-time defending champion Rory McIlroy opened with a 71 at Oakdale, while Matt Fitzpatrick, who will seek to defend his U.S. Open title next week at Los Angeles Country Club, was one of nine players at 68.

Conners shot a bogey-free 5-under 67 on Thursday to share the first-round lead at the RBC Canadian Open. Conners is seeking to become the tournament’s first Canadian winner in 69 years.

Conners’ two PGA Tour victories both came at the Valero Texas Open, including this year.

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