Bernd Wiesberger hoping history doesn’t repeat itself in Germany

Austrian cards eight-under 63 in weather-affected first round

Austria's Bernd Wiesberger is confident history will not repeat itself after setting the clubhouse target in the weather-affected Porsche European Open AT Bad Griesbach in Germany.

After the start of play was delayed by almost three and a half hours due to fog, Wiesberger carded a superb eight-under-par 63 to claim a two-shot lead over Italy's Renato Paratore, with half the field unable to complete their rounds before darkness fell.

Wiesberger held a share of the lead in the same event 12 months ago after an opening 64, but then carded a second round of 76 to amazingly miss the halfway cut.

“I started 64 last year and desperately wanted to make that (birdie) putt on the last to not make too many memories come up,” admitted the 30-year-old, whose second place in the KLM Open a fortnight ago was only his third top-10 finish of the season.


“But tomorrow I’m thinking more about what happened today and am going to keep pushing and try to play the game I’ve played today.

“What happened a year ago was funny at the time, or not funny right after the round but it was a weird week and I pretty much know I’m not going to repeat that tomorrow.”

Starting on the back nine at Golf Resort Bad Griesbach, Wiesberger birdied five of his first eight holes to race to the turn in 31, only to drive out of bounds on the first to run up a double-bogey six.

The three-time European Tour winner responded with birdies on the next two holes and also finished his round in style with an eagle on the eighth and a closing birdie to avoid another 64.

“I think I might not play any practice rounds any time soon,” Wiesberger joked, a reference to the fact that practice rounds and the pre-tournament pro-am were cancelled as greenkeeping staff battled to get the course playable after recent flooding.

“Obviously I played all right. I had a couple of shots that cost me but I made a lot of good putts, hit a lot of good shots and I’m quite happy with the way I played today.

“I had a couple of company days last week and took it quite easy, but went on the range on Tuesday and felt I was swinging really well, just working on my long game and driver off the tee.

“I felt quite steady over it and could go for it and that helps on a course like here where everything is on the fly and it plays a bit longer than it did last year.”

Paratore also had a double bogey on his card, at the fifth, in his 65, but posted six birdies and an eagle to finish a shot ahead of Lucas Bjerregaard, Daniel Im, Michael Jonzon and Steve Webster, with Matthew Southgate also five under after 11 holes.

Northern Ireland's Michael Hoey included an eagle two on the first hole in a four-under 67, while Pádraig Harrington carded a level-par 71. Ruaidhri McGee (two under after nine) and Paul Dunne (one under after six) must complete their first rounds on Friday morning.

Ryder Cup team-mates Martin Kaymer and Thomas Pieters were level par and two over respectively after nine holes.