Van Zyl shares lead in Sweden
Stockholm - Robert Karlsson took a share of the Scandinavian Masters on Thursday, but this was a young Swedish amateur player rather than his compatriot and namesake, a former European number one and Ryder Cup player.
The 22-year-old carded a five-under 67 to stand on top of the leaderboard alongside fellow Swede Alex Noren and South African Jaco Van Zyl.
Karlsson had four birdies on the way out to turn in 32 and added further gains at the tenth and 13th.
A double bogey at the 17th threatened to spoil his day, but he responded with a closing birdie.
"That was a great start to the tournament," said Karlsson, playing only his second European Tour event.
"Ever since I qualified on Monday, I’ve been trying to really enjoy this experience. It's hard not to smile."
Qualifying School graduate Van Zyl had six birdies against just one dropped shot.
"It was good. Really tough conditions, very good golf course," said Van Zyl.
The better-known Robert Karlsson opened with a respectable 69, one shot off second place which is shared by Sweden's Niklas Lemke, England’s John Parry, Italian Lorenzo Gagli and Spaniard Alfredo Garcia-Heredia on four under.
Leading first-round scores from the Scandinavian Masters at the par-72 course in Stockholm on Thursday (* denotes amateur):
67 Alexander Noren (Sweden) 67
Robert Karlsson* (Sweden) 67
Jaco Van Zyl (South Africa) 67 68 John Parry (Britain) 68
Niklas Lemke (Sweden) 68
Alfredo Garcia Heredia (Spain) 68
Lorenzo Gagli (Italy) 68 69 Felipe Aguilar (Chile) 69
Anthony Wall (Britain) 69
Kristoffer Broberg (Sweden) 69
Scott Hend (Australia) 69
Pablo Martin (Spain) 69
Pontus Widegren* (Sweden) 69
Robert Karlsson (Sweden) 69
Richard Finch (Britain) 69 70 Jeev Milkha Singh (India) 70
Lee Slattery (Britain) 70
Anders Sjostrand (Sweden) 70
Daniel Vancsik (Argentina) 70
Shiv Kapur (India) 70
Richard Johnson (Sweden) 70 71 Leif Westerberg (Sweden) 71
Scott Strange (Australia) 71
Bubba Watson (U.S.) 71
Richard McEvoy (Britain) 71
David Howell (Britain) 71
Fredrik Henge (Sweden) 71
Marcus Fraser (Australia) 71
Estanislao Goya (Argentina) 71