Harrington leads Wachovia field after opening round

Friday, May 4, 2007

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Padraig Harrington took three weeks off, the longest break from golf in his 10 years as a pro, and worried that he wouldn't be very sharp Thursday at the Wachovia Championship. He wasn't satisfied with hardly anything but his score.

Harrington made two tough par putts early, then a bunch more for birdies on his way to a 6-under 66, giving him a one-shot lead over Vijay Singh and Jason Bohn on a day of ever-changing wind that kept everyone on their toes.

The scoring was decent and the leaderboard eclectic, about the only common thread was that it favored those with health issues.

During his three-week break after the Masters, Harrington had an early stage of skin cancer removed from his forehead and put his clubs down for a week, which is about as unusual as him taking a break.

Trevor Immelman lost 22 pounds from a parasite he picked up during the Masters and still isn't at full strength, although he managed a 68.

David Berganio Jr. went for a hike in the hills near his home in California and injured his back, but he shot 69.

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