China's Dou leads Asian Amateur

Updated: October 24, 2013, 10:58 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

China's Dou Zecheng carded three birdies and no bogeys in an opening-round 68 to take a 2-shot lead Thursday at the Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship.

The winner of the 117-person field, who will be crowned Sunday at the Nanshan International Golf Club in Longkou City, China, will earn an invitation to the 2014 Masters as well as a spot in the International Final Qualifying for the Open Championship. The runner-up also receives a spot in the IFQ for the year's third major.

South Korea's Lee Chang-woo, who tied for second with Rory McIlroy at last week's Kolon Korea Open, is 2 shots back of Zecheng in second place after the opening round.

"I'm pretty much happy with my score because I was in some dangerous situations where I had to make a few six- and seven-foot putts for par," Lee said after his round, according to the APAC official website. "The course is long and it was very windy … it was a good score in the circumstances."

Two of the top-ranked amateurs in the world, No. 7 Oliver Goss and No. 9 Brady Watt -- both from Australia -- are in contention after the first round. Watt, who lost to Goss in the semifinals of the U.S. Amateur earlier this year, shot an even-par 71 and is 3 shots back while Watt bogeyed his final hole to shoot 72.

Defending champion Guan Tianlang, who set the record as the youngest competitor in Masters history in April and turns 15 on Friday, shot a 3-over-par 74 and is tied for 16th.

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