|British Masters first-round leaderboard|
|-5 T Fleetwood (Eng), E Pepperell (Eng), M Wallace (Eng); -4 R McEvoy (Eng), M Lorenzo-Vera (Fra), J Lagergren (Swe), D Lipsky (US), A Levy (Fra)|
|Selected others: -3 M Fitzpatrick (Eng); -1 D Willett (Eng); E M Kaymer (Ger); +2 J Rose (Eng), L Westwood (Eng), R Ramsay (Sco)|
Eddie Pepperell shot a spectacular hole-in-one on the opening day of the British Masters as he shared the first-round lead with fellow Englishmen Tommy Fleetwood and Matt Wallace.
Pepperell’s ace came at the ninth, the 27-year-old’s tee-shot spinning back into the cup after hitting the flag.
He followed it with a birdie on the 10th and an eagle on the 11th, eventually finishing on five under.
“It was a bizarre shot from where I was standing,” he said.
“It looked like it pitched in the hole, jumped up and looked like it was going long because of the height it came out, and obviously went in.
“I played awfully in the pro-am on Wednesday – probably the worst I have in a while – and I wouldn’t say I played great today but I had that really hot run and it’s great to be at the top with Matt and Tommy.”
Fleetwood, part of Europe’s victorious Ryder Cup team earlier this month, also produced a freak shot on the opening day.
The 27-year-old’s tee-shot on the par-three 17th finished in a cup holder in a buggy which had been parked to the left of the green.
He said: “Luckily it didn’t go in the beer in the other cup holder because it would have ruined a drink and the golf ball.”
Fleetwood’s Ryder Cup team-mate and Race to Dubai rival Francesco Molinari is six shots behind, while England’s Richard McEvoy is among a pack of five on four under.
Justin Rose – the competition’s host this year and the 2002 winner – finished his opening round on two over, alongside fellow Englishman Lee Westwood.