Jason Kokrak, Paul Casey share lead at LIV Golf Mayakoba

John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

Jason Kokrak and Englishman Paul Casey are tied for the first-round lead at LIV Golf Mayakoba after shooting rounds of 6-under-par 65 on Friday in Playa del Carmen, Mexico.

The tournament kicked off LIV Golf’s second season at El Camaleon, a course designed by LIV CEO Greg Norman. It is LIV’s first foray into Mexico and its first time staging a tournament on a course that has hosted PGA Tour events.

Kokrak and Casey hold a two-shot lead over Peter Uihlein, Talor Gooch and Mexico’s Carlos Ortiz, who shot 4-under 67.

Kokrak and Casey shot their 65s in very different ways. Kokrak poured in six birdies, including a chip-in, and stayed bogey-free.

“With my type of game, I don’t always get the chance to have a bogey-free round,” Kokrak said.

Casey, meanwhile, started his round with a birdie at the par-4 sixth and was 5 under before taking a double bogey at the par-4 second hole. He bounced back by finishing his round with three consecutive birdies at Nos. 3-5.

Gooch was the only other player to go bogey-free Friday.

Dustin Johnson, last season’s individual champion and the captain of the defending team champion 4Aces, is tied for sixth at 3-under 68 with Charles Howell III, England’s Ian Poulter, Australia’s Marc Leishman and South Africa’s Branden Grace.

LIV’s highest-ranked player, world No. 5 Cameron Smith of Australia, is alone in 11th at 2-under 69.

Casey and Howell helped Crushers take the team lead at 10 under through one round. India’s Anirban Lahiri contributed a 1-under 70. The top three scores for each four-man team count for each round of the team score. Crushers captain Bryson DeChambeau was the odd man out for his team after opening with a 1-over 72 that included a double bogey-bogey-bogey stretch.

Crushers have a three shot lead over Johnson’s 4Aces and Brooks Koepka’s Smash, each at 7 under. 4Aces got contributions from Johnson, Uihlein and Pat Perez (even-par 71), and Smash featured Kokrak, Koepka (even) and Matthew Wolff (1 under).

–Field Level Media

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