Pampling Leads Suspended International


The International 2004CASTLE ROCK, Colo. -- Rod Pampling collected 15 points on Thursday to lead The International as the opening round was suspended due to bad weather. Geoff Ogilvy and Jose Coceres share second place with 14 points each.
Jose Maria Olazabal and Tom Lehman are knotted in fourth place with 11 points apiece. Justin Rose, 1992 champion Brad Faxon and Tim Petrovic were two points further back in a tie for sixth.
With the modified Stableford scoring system in place this week at Castle Pines Golf Club, the final tune-up for next week's PGA Championship will feature aggressive play as players try to accumulate points. Players receive two points for a birdie, five points for an eagle and eight points for a double eagle. Players lose one point for a bogey and three points for a double bogey or worse, with a par receiving a score of zero.
The opening round was rolling along until thunderstorms approached the area in the afternoon, forcing a delay shortly after 5:00 p.m. (ET). The stoppage continued for almost three hours before a decision was made to halt the round.
Pampling did his damage in the morning with four birdies on the front side to make the turn with eight points. The Australian added another birdie at the par-4 15th and jumped into the top spot at the par-5 17th.
Pampling eagled the hole for a quick five points and the clubhouse lead.
'I didn't miss a fairway,' said Pampling, who totaled 15 points for the entire tournament last year. 'Thankfully I wasn't in the rough. I'm sure there will be a few instances where I get in there.'
After a steady start to the season, Pampling's 2004 campaign was slowed by three consecutive missed cuts until he tied for 27th at Troon last month.
'This time of year, I don't know what the reason is, I just don't seem to play as well,' he said. 'I played the British Open, and before that I was just starting to play well and I just had a couple of things go wrong, which it doesn't take much to miss a cut out here.'
Ogilvy, who tied for fifth at the Western Open, played the back side first and dropped one point with a bogey at the 10th. He recovered well with an eagle at the par-5 17th and holed his second shot for an eagle at the par-4 third.
The 27-year-old ran off three birdies over his next five holes to get to 15 points before a bogey at the ninth dropped him back into a tie for second.
'I think the format suits me more than anything,' said the Australian. 'I think I've always been a guy who makes six bogeys and six birdies and shoots even par, rather than shoot 18 pars and that's the name of the game here. Probably a couple eagles, which are a double bonus, and that's huge, one eagle and you're five points, that's pretty good.'
Coceres also started on the 10th and picked up three straight birdies from the 11th. He then birdied the 15th and added an eagle at the 17th to make the turn with 13 points.
'Very good job on the second shots and very happy for the eagle on 17 for five points,' said Coceres, a two-time winner on the PGA Tour. 'It's different from the normal.'
The Argentine cooled off on the front side, however, with a bogey and a birdie for his share of second.
Defending champion Davis Love III, who earned the last of his four tour victories of 2003 at this event last year, tallied five birdies and two bogeys for a total of eight points in the opening round.
Love was joined by Alex Cejka, Duffy Waldorf, Robert Allenby, John Huston, John Rollins, Brian Kortan and Danny Briggs in a tie for ninth.
Among the players who will complete the first round on Friday were Jay Haas and Chris DiMarco, both with six points through eight holes. The first round will resume Friday at 9:00 a.m. (ET).
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