Brian Hadley, the head golf professional at Thames Valley Golf Club in London, Ont., posted a one-over-par 72 in sustained 40 km/h winds to open the PGA Club Professional Championship of Canada at Port Royal Golf Club in Bermuda.
“Other than the double I made on the seventh hole, I played pretty solidly out there today,” Hadley said after a first round that included three birdies, two bogeys and a double bogey.
“My game plan today was to just get it in play off the tee, hit a lot of greens and shoot somewhere around even-par,” he said.
Scott Allred of Elbow Springs Golf Club in Alberta and the Outback Golf Academy and Golf Show’s Craig Hocknull are two shots back of Hadley in second place after matching 74s on Tuesday.
While he’s never won on the national stage before, Hadley is no stranger to playing well in big events.
Earlier this season he won the PGA of Ontario Championship for the third time since 2012.
He also played in the 2013 RBC Canadian Open after winning the Ontario qualifier and shot a 59 (13 under par) in the first round of the 2013 PGA of Ontario Championship.
Even with a history of playing well when it counts, the 35-year-old says he’s not about to get ahead of himself this week at Port Royal.
“There’s still a lot of golf to played out here this week,” he said.
“I don’t think the wind is going anywhere, so I’ve just got to keep doing the same things that worked for me (Tuesday) and avoid the big number, but, this is a PGA of Canada national championship so it would be pretty fun to be in contention later this week,” he said.
The Inter-Zone Team Championship, which is comprised of four players per zone (and three scores per team counting), will be handed out after 36 holes. Team Ontario leads by eight shots over Alberta, with British Columbia 10 back after the first day.
For the two leaderboards, click here.