Benn Barham fires 63 for lead in Austria


European Tour

OBERWALTERSDORF, Austria – Benn Barham of England shot an 8-under 63 Thursday to lead the Austrian Open by one stroke after the opening round.

Barham had an eagle and seven birdies. His best result on the European Tour was third at last year’s Russian Open.

Scott Drummond of Scotland and Brett Rumford of Australia are in second, while 2007 champion Richard Green is in a group of four another shot back.

Ryder Cup player Soren Hansen of Denmark, the highest ranked player at No. 42, shot a 67. Jose Maria Olazabal, a winner of 23 European Tour titles, finished with a 70.

The Austrian Open was initially scheduled for June but was moved after the British Masters was dropped from the calendar.