Italian Open: Rikard Karlberg leads after rain-affected first round

Rikard Karlberg
Rikard Karlberg beat Martin Kaymer on the second extra hole of the play-off to win the 2015 Italian Open
Italian Open, first-round leaderboard
-7 R Karlberg (Swe); -6 F Molinari (Ital); -5 R Karlsson (Swe), A Otaegui (Spa); Selected others: -4 D Hornsey (Eng), J McCleary (Sco), R Davies (Wal), R Bland (Eng)
-3 R Rock (Eng), P Waring (Eng), M Baldwin (Eng); -2 C Wood (Eng); -1 L Westwood (Eng)
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Defending champion Rikard Karlberg leads home favourite Francesco Molinari by one shot after the first round of a rain-affected Italian Open at Monza.

The Swede hit six birdies, including three in his first four holes, in a seven-under-par round of 64 at Golf Club Milano in Monza.

England's Chris Wood is six shots off the pace after a two-under-par 69.

Wood is one of seven members of Europe's Ryder Club team playing at the event at Parco Reale di Monza.

The Ryder Cup against the United States, held at Hazeltine in Minnesota, takes place from 30 September to 2 October.

England's Lee Westwood, who went round in 70, said: "Hopefully I can get myself in contention and get the competitive juices flowing.

"Next week is a week off. I'll work on my game at home and do a bit of gym work to keep the body ticking over, but I don't want to overdo it because the Ryder Cup is obviously a long and tiring week, both mentally and physically."

With play suspended twice following heavy rain and lightning storms in Rome, more than half the field did not finish the first round on Thursday.

The other European Ryder Cup players - Germany's Martin Kaymer, England's Danny Willett, Andy Sullivan and Matthew Fitzpatrick, and Spain's Rafael Cabrera-Bello - are set to complete their opening rounds on Friday.

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