AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The Latest on the Dell Technologies Match Play (all times local):
The four players in Group 15 are tied after the opening round of the Dell Technologies Match Play.
Pat Perez rallied from 3 down with seven holes to play to halve his match with Si Woo Kim. Perez stuffed his tee shot to 3 feet for birdie on the 17th to square the match, and Kim missed a 10-footer on the 18th that would have won it.
In the other match, Webb Simpson also rallied from 3 down at the turn to halve his match with Gary Woodland. Simpson also tied the match with a tee shot to 3 feet on the 17th.
It’s the first time in three years of this format that all four players from one group earned a half-point in the opening round.
Meanwhile, Luke List has made it to the 18th hole against Justin Thomas, even though List has had to putt with his sand wedge. Thomas was 1 up playing the final hole.
It’s hard enough to play the No. 2 player in the world. Making it tougher on Luke List is that he’s putting with a wedge in the Dell Technologies Match Play.
List’s putter somehow became damaged, so he is using the blade of his wedge to putt. It’s not helping the cause, as Justin Thomas has raced out to a 3-up lead through 12 holes.
Oddly enough, List would be able to keep using his putter under the modernized rules that take effect next year.
Just not on Wednesday.
Justin Thomas and Luke List meet again, this time with a lot less at stake.
Thomas defeated List in a sudden-death playoff a month ago at the Honda Classic, denying List his first PGA Tour victory. They faced off Wednesday in the Dell Technologies Match Play. Because the format is round robin in the 16 four-man groups, losing an opening match does not mean being eliminated from the tournament.
But it helps to win. A year ago, three players lost the opening match and wound up advancing from their group.
In other opening-day matches at Austin Country Club, Tommy Fleetwood faced Ian Poulter, defending champion Dustin Johnson played Bernd Wiesberger and Sergio Garcia makes his debut as a father when he plays Shubhankar Sharma of India.