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Snedeker 'shocked' after pain-free opening 67

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ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – Brandt Snedeker didn’t know what to expect this week at the RSM Classic, his first start since the Travelers Championship in June.

The eight-time PGA Tour winner was sidelined with a sternum injury and spent the last few weeks working on a new swing with coach John Tillery to take pressure off the injury.

Those lowered expectations brought a solid start for Snedeker on Day 1 at Sea Island Resort, where he opened with a 3-under 67 to move to within six strokes of early leader Chris Kirk.

“I’m kind of shocked to be honest, I thought I’d have more pain,” Snedeker said. “For the most part two days in, so far so good.”

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Snedeker, who also changed his diet to alleviate inflammation, has been slowed by an assortment of injuries in recent years, including hip surgeries in 2011 and ’12, and a rib injury in ’09 the forced him to miss eight weeks.

Playing the Plantation course, Snedeker birdied the second, fifth, 15th and 17th holes, and he had just a single bogey at the par-4 fourth hole.