HOYLAKE, England (AP) - Rory McIlroy had everything go his way in the British Open.
A lovely summer day in England with abundant sunshine and minimal wind allowed him to attack Royal Liverpool. He made half his six birdies on the par 5s and kept bogeys off his card. And on the day Tiger Woods made a promising return, McIlroy took the lead with a 6-under 66, his best score in nearly two years at a major.
Woods got off to a troubling start with two quick bogeys, nearly made another one on the fourth hole, and then looked like a 14-time major champion when he ran off five birdies in six holes toward the end of his round for a 69. Not bad for guy who had back surgery March 31, who started taking full swings only a month ago and who had not played in a major in 11 months.
Matteo Manassero broke par in The Open for the first time since he was a 16-year-old amateur, shooting a 67. Adam Scott was in a large group at 68 along with Jim Furyk, Sergio Garcia, Brooks Koepka, Shane Lowry and Italian brothers Francesco and Edoardo Molinari.
Phil Mickelson struggled to a 74 and Ernie Els had a 79.
SYLVANIA, Ohio (AP) - Laura Diaz got off to a surprising start at the Marathon Classic, shooting a 9-under 62 for a four-stroke lead in the opening round.
U.S. Open champion Michelle Wie shot a 2-over 73, 2008 Marathon winner Paula Creamer was at 72 along with another perennial contender at Highland Meadows, Morgan Pressel.
The defending champion, Spain’s Beatriz Recari, and the world’s No. 1-ranked player, Stacy Lewis, a Toledo native, were well down the list at 1 under.
Winless in the past 12 years on the LPGA Tour, Diaz birdied her first five holes in a round that included nine birdies and no bogeys.
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Lance Armstrong talked for several hours with cycling investigators about doping in the sport’s past, said an attorney for the champion who was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles over his use of performance-enhancing drugs.
Armstrong attorney Elliot Peters told The Associated Press that Armstrong set up the meeting and sat for questions for seven hours on May 22, and described the session as a hotel outside Dulles Airport in suburban Washington, D.C., as a “very good meeting.”
The probe has been expected to center on the International Cycling Union’s handling of doping in the late 1990s and early 2000s, especially its links with Armstrong. Armstrong’s willingness to meet with investigators has been seen as crucial to their efforts to determine whether former officials with the sport’s governing body aided his doping as the Texan became cycling’s biggest star.
SAINT-ETIENNE, France (AP) - Alexander Kristoff of Norway, in a solo show of opportunistic racing, won the 12th stage of the Tour de France in a sprint as Vincenzo Nibali kept the yellow jersey for a 10th day.