First round leads are not an encouraging tournament omen for Sergio Garcia.

He began with a sharp 65 at the Honda Classic but closed with a one over par 71 as Adam Scott held his nerve to win by a shot.

Garcia has held 11 first round leads on the PGA tour and converted just one - at the 2008 Players Championship - into a wire to wire victory.

Scott closed with an even-par 70 in just his third start since a new rule banning the stroke used for the long putter that he had the past five years.

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Scott calmly rolled in a 30-inch par putt for a one-shot victory over Garcia.

This was a two-man race from the start. Scott and Garcia were tied with eight holes to play until Garcia missed a 3-foot par putt on No. 11 and Scott hit out of a fairway bunker to 2 feet for birdie on the 12th. Garcia never caught up.

It was the Australian's first victory since Colonial in May 2014, and his first using a conventional putter since the 2010 Singapore Open.

- Wynne Gray/AP

ROTORUA DAILY POST | Sport
29 Feb, 2016 5:20am
2 minutes to read