- Associated Press - Thursday, December 13, 2012

COOLUM, AUSTRALIA (AP) - Australia’s Daniel Popovic shot an 8-under 64 to take a two-stroke lead after the first round of the Australian PGA on Thursday, then revealed that his father is battling incurable cancer.

Popovic said his father, Radi, who gave him his start in the game, is battling a form of bone cancer.

Popovic, on his first year on the Australasian PGA Tour, birdied his first four holes at the Palmer Coolum Resort, and later had a string of five straight birdies.

Australia’s Scott Strange opened with a 66, and 2006 U.S. Open champion Geoff Ogilvy of Australia and OneAsia Tour regulars Zhang Xinjun of China and Choo Tze-huang of Singapore shot 67s.

Peter Senior, the Australian Open winner last week at age 53, had a 68.

Greg Norman pulled out after two holes _ both bogeys _ because of food poisoning.


MALELANE, South Africa (AP) _ France’s Gregory Bourdy shot a 6-under 66 at Leopard Creek to take the first-round lead in the Alfred Dunhill Championship.

South African star Schwartzel, coming off an 11-stroke victory Sunday in Thailand, was a stroke back along with countrymen Louis de Jager, Oliver Bekker and Darren Fichardt and Englishmen Steve Webster and Richard Bland. South Africa’s Louis Oosthuizen had a 73.

The tournament is sanctioned by the European and Sunshine tours.

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