John Daly one stroke behind leader

Updated: February 2, 2012, 10:49 AM ET
Associated Press

DOHA, Qatar -- Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano finished with three straight birdies for a 6-under 66 Thursday at the Qatar Masters, overcoming wind and blowing sand to lead after the first round.

The Spaniard, who is looking for his sixth European Tour victory, credited his putting. He holed several putts of more than 20 feet on his way to nine birdies to go along with three bogeys.

John Daly (67) was a shot behind, followed by K.J. Choi (68) and Jason Day (68). Six players, including 1999 British Open champion Paul Lawrie and Nicolas Colsaerts, are three shots off the pace.

About two-thirds of the field shot over par, including defending champion Thomas Bjorn (79).


Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press