Howell starts strongly in India
BIRDIES came in twos for David Howell as his strong recent form continued in the opening round of the Avantha Masters.
The Broome Manor pro, without a European Tour win in seven years but in fine fettle since last summer, carded a four-under-par 68 at Jaypee Gardens, the new venue for the Indian tournament.
Howell made gains at the fourth and fifth and 14th and 15th in a round in which he didn't drop a single shot.
That left the Swindonian as the leading Englishman in a tie for 15th and seven shots off the lead held by Chinnarat Phadungsil.
The Thai fired an incredible round of 61 in which he birdied eight of the last nine holes.