Smith Turns Up The Heat Being Back In Britain To Lead LIV London

Open Champion Cam Smith not only warmed to the heatwave conditions but he turned-up the heat also being back teeing-up in Britain for a first time since last year’s historic triumph at St. Andrews.

Smith tops the LIV London leaderboard, producing a sizzling display with the putter in posting a bogey-free eight-under 63.

“Wasn’t much bad stuff in there, to be honest,” said Smith.

“I feel like I’ve been on this kind of trend for a few months now.”

Fellow Aussie and Crushers team-mate Marc Leishman made it an Aussie double atop of the board in the $25m tournament, signing for a seven-under 64 to be just one behind his close friend and management stablemate.

Starting from the opening hole, and in this second anniversary of LIV Golf, Smith birdied seven of his closing 10 holes and to the huge delight of a huge fan attendance.

The return of LIV Golf to the northern outskirts of London has been a massive success, so much so, tomorrow’s second round will have the ‘House Full’ sign out and the likelihood of Sunday also being a sell-out.

Smith capped his round first with three birdies in succession from the ninth and then a second three-in-row from the 13th, and then rounded off his round birdieing the closing two holes.

As well, the champion Aussie was teeing-up on the course for a first having not joined LIV Golf to after his Open Championship, and remembering the inaugural LIV Golf event at the Centurion was staged in June last year.

Aussie Cam Smith tees-up on route to an eight-under 63 day one at the Centurnion Club

Smith has finished 12th or better in his last seven starts, including top 10s in the PGA Championship and U.S. Open. Although he’s yet to win in 2023, Smith is building plenty of momentum going into Royal Liverpool.

Leishman commenced his round from the 12th hole and quickly raced to four-under with four birdies in succession from his 13th hole.  He picked-up further birdies at the 18th and 1st holes, dropped a shot at the third but then birdied the eighth and ninth holes on his card.

“I think any tournament that Cam enters, he’s certainly a strong contender,” Leishman said. “I think playing this week is going to help him. The wind is very different, I feel like, in England and Scotland. It’s a lot heavier. Getting used to that is pretty important.”

Aussie Marc Leishman

Smith navigated the first six holes, the most difficult stretch at Centurion, in 1 under. Starting with the ninth hole, he birdied seven of the next nine holes before settling for par on the par-5 18th. He said the big difference Friday was getting more in sync with caddie Sam Pinfold.

“Sam and I worked really nice today, which is probably the first time in a long time where we really stuck it out and actually talked through some shots,” Smith said. “Probably something that had kind of been a missing piece to the puzzle. It was nice to figure that stuff out before another big tournament coming up.”

The scenes at London LIV are amazing and again, turning men’s professional golf into a ‘must be there’ occasion, and this is not just inside the ropes.

From your arrival at the course there’s a feeeling that organisers have gone overboard to make fans feel welcome. This was very noticeable last week and it’s even moreson at the Centurion Club.

The tournament village is one of the best experienced in all my years in attending pro golf tournaments.  So much to see,  so much to do and not just for the younger fans.



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